Comic Relief’s Red Nose Day fundraiser is currently in excess of £40m after performances by Tom Holland, Courteney Cox and Lulu.
During Friday’s show, it was announced that the endurance challenges undertaken by Olympian Tom Daley and BBC Radio 1 presenter Jordan North ahead of the show had netted almost £2million of that total.
The charity event also included sketches by Matt Lucas, David Walliams, Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders.
Sir Lenny Henry, David Tennant, Paddy McGuinness and Alesha Dixon hosted the fundraising show, which was first broadcast from the BBC’s Salford studios.
Broadcaster Zoe Ball was due to be part of the presentation line-up but was forced to withdraw the day after testing positive for Covid, with Dixon replacing her.
The Friday show on BBC One featured a packed schedule that included sketches from Lucas and Walliams as they brought back their comedy sketch show Rock Profile for a one-off special.
The Little Britain stars dressed dramatically as they impersonated global stars like Adele, Miley Cyrus and Lady Gaga while Vernon Kay interviewed them.
In another sketch, French and Saunders reprized their roles as The Extras – two constantly over-the-top film extras – from their BBC sketch show.
In the scene, the comedy duo poked fun at The Repair Shop host Jay Blades as they try to get a free repair from him and his team of skilled repairmen.
However, things go awry when Blades refuses to fix her toaster and they later destroy a Dame Judi Dench childhood doll, which she lets the repair team fix.
A number of other superstars made appearances during the fundraiser show including Holland, Cox and Lulu in a sketch where Sir Lenny has to tell them the show is ending so their segments have been cut.
The presenter goes to great lengths to break the news, including locking Spider-Man actor Holland in his dressing room.
Paul Rudd, Chris Kamara, Vic Reeves, Jeff Goldblum, Clive Myrie, Jamie Dornan and Gordon Ramsay were also among the famous faces who made dramatic scenes when told they didn’t do the show.
Strictly Come Dancing champions Rose Ayling-Ellis and Giovanni Pernice also gave an emotional dance performance to a rendition of Ellie Goulding’s How Long Will I Love You.
Singer Lola Young performed Together In Electric Dreams by Giorgio Moroder and Philip Oakey towards the end of the show.
The broadcast also saw Jack Whitehall take on English footballers Declan Rice and Mason Mount in a mini-golf challenge, with the comedian finishing last.
As a loser loser, lifelong Arsenal fan Whitehall was forced to post a photo of him in a West Ham shirt on Instagram.
In another special, Tim Vine narrowly beat fellow comedian Kiri Pritchard-McLean in a herding contest in a special version of Countryfile’s One Man And His Dog contest.
At the end of the broadcast, the hosts revealed that the show has raised £40,695,260 so far.
During the show, Daley was told his Hell Of A Homecoming challenge contributed £1,027,111 to that total.
The Olympic gold medalist completed 290 miles of rowing, swimming, cycling and running in a grueling four-day mission from London to his hometown of Plymouth in Devon last month.
They revealed North has helped raise £826,307 through his 100-mile streak, which he completed earlier this month.
In the run-up to the broadcast, TV presenter Joel Dommett and pop superstar Kylie Minogue were also forced to withdraw from the event after testing positive for Covid.
Minogue was due to appear in a sketch with the cast of BBC comedy Ghosts but said on Thursday she would be watching from home after contracting the virus.
Comedian Dommett was forced to withdraw from presenting late-night show The Great Comic Relief Prizeathon alongside AJ Odudu after returning a positive test, and Vernon Kay stepped in.
The Comic Relief Prizeathon follows BBC News At Ten and continues the Red Nose Day celebrations into the night with live music, comedy skits and prize draws.
https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/comic-reliefs-red-nose-day-raises-more-than-40-million-41464171.html Comic Relief’s Red Nose Day raises more than £40million