Matt Lucas Was Hired as the New Cohost on 'The Great British Baking Show' for the Strangest Reason

Kayla Keegan
·2 mins read
Photo credit: Getty/Instagram
Photo credit: Getty/Instagram

From Good Housekeeping

The Great British Baking Show has a brand new cohost this year, and his name is Matt Lucas.

Much to the surprise of dedicated Bake Show fans everywhere, Sandi Toksvig announced her departure from the popular Channel 4 show ahead of season 11. She has since been replaced with Matt, who, according to the comedian himself, wound up getting the job thanks to a "strange" set of events ... and fellow cohost Noel Fielding.

"They were looking for a new host, and Noel had a dream that I was the cohost," he told presenter Roman Kemp of Capital Radio in the U.K.. "And instead of saying to the producers, 'I dreamt Matt Lucas was the cohost', he just said, 'Matt Lucas would be a good cohost I think,' and then I got an audition."

From there, things moved quickly. According to Matt, he got a call about the show on Friday, auditioned the following Tuesday, and booked the gig by Thursday. And now, Matt is delighting Great British Baking Show viewers left and right with his cheeky, low-key humor and wise cracks.

Who is Matt Lucas on The Great British Baking Show?

For those not familiar with Matt's background, he is an actor, comedian, and TV personality, who first made a name for himself on the U.K.-based celebrity quiz show Shooting Stars as well as sketch comedy series Rock Profile and Little Britain. Over the years, he has also appeared in Doctor Who, Alice in Wonderland, and Bridesmaids.

At the age of six, Matt started losing his hair and was eventually diagnosed with alopecia areata, a common autoimmune skin disease that causes hair loss on the scalp, face, and, at times, other parts of the body.

While the diagnosis brought with it many challenges, Matt often lends his celebrity status to help others suffering from and feeling insecure about the disease. It also, as he said on the British talk show Loose Women, led him to comedy.

"I was already known. 'Oh, that's the kid with no hair,'" he said. "I thought I would like to do something with this attention, and that's what made me become a performer, really."

Apart from Bake Show, Matt has been throwing his time into helping coronavirus relief efforts. In March 2020, he revived his iconic character from Shooting Stars, George Dawes, to help FeedNHS, a charity he co-founded that gives hot meals to frontline workers part of the U.K.'s National Health Service during the pandemic.

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