'The Shape of Water' by Guillermo del Toro Gets 12 Bafta Nominations

British actress Joanna Lumley is thrilled to take over 2018's hosting duties

"I want to thank Bafta so much for asking me to do this, I said yes indecently quickly", Lumley said as she was officially named as host, at the announcement of award nominees.

Cold War monster movie The Shape of Water leads the race for the British Academy Film Awards, the United Kingdom equivalent of the Oscars. Other nominations in the same category at the British equivalent of the Oscars, commonly known as the Baftas, include "Call Me by Your Name", "Dunkirk" and "Darkest Hour", the Winston Churchill biopic. Dubbed the big surprises of the ceremony, each film has been nominated for eight awards.

Toro, who won Best Director at the 75th Golden Globe Awards on Sunday, is nominated for both Director and Original Screenplay while Sally Hawkins is running for Leading Actress and Octavia Spencer for Supporting Actress.

"I always thought of looking at the Bafta films with just Stephen Fry there forever more, so who thought I'd turn into Stephen Fry?"

"Darkest Hour" received nine nominations as well, including for outstanding British film, where it will compete with "The Death of Stalin", "God's Own Country", "Lady Macbeth", "Paddington 2" and "Three Billboards".

In the Animated Film category, competitors are Coco, Loving Vincent and My Life as a Courgette.

Best-actor contenders are Daniel Day-Lewis, Gary Oldman, Daniel Kaluuya, Jamie Bell and Timothee Chalamet.

Their fellow nominees are Tessa Thompson, Florence Pugh, and Josh O'Connor.

Winners will be announced on February 18, two weeks before the Oscars. Joanna Lumley takes over from veteran presenter Stephen Fry.

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