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Jamie Lee Curtis defends Ariana DeBose's BAFTAs rap

Jamie Lee Curtis has defended Ariana DeBose's much-ridiculed rap at the BAFTA Film Awards.

The West Side Story actress opened the BAFTAs on 19 February by singing We Are Family and Sisters Are Doin' It for Themselves and rapping original lyrics which celebrated the female nominees, such as, "Angela Bassett did the thing, Viola Davis my 'Woman King,' Blanchett Cate you're a genius, Jamie Lee you are all of us."

DeBose's polarising performance has become a meme, with many ridiculing the rap, but Curtis, one of the women named in the tune, has come to her defence.

"I'm unclear as to what the f**k people are on about. For me, it was joyous, celebratory, sisterly, hot, spicy, and she's just so incredibly talented," she told Deadline at the Producers Guild of America Awards on Saturday. "I was into it... I was having a great time. She is a fantastic talent, these people should shut the f**k up, back the f**k off and let this woman shine just her light."

Bassett told Variety at the NAACP Image Awards on Saturday that she reached out to DeBose on social media to make sure she was OK, and she elaborated further to Extra at the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards on Sunday.

"I DMed her and I said, 'I hope you have not been at all bothered by the attention we're generating, my dear, because you are fierce and I adore you,'" she shared. "We love how everyone's just having fun with it now."

Bassett made reference to the rap when she won Entertainer of the Year at the NAACP Awards, joking, "I guess Angela Bassett did the thing, huh?"

DeBose also poked fun at herself when she presented a SAG award with Diego Luna on Sunday, by saying, "Diego, do the thing."