James McAvoy, star of X-Men, It, and His Dark Materials, can bake. We know this because the actor joined the celebrity edition of The Great British Bake Off, called Celebrity Bake Off, and absolutely crushed it. This particular edition of the wholesome show that highlights the skills and inventions of amateur bakers supports charity. And this year, Celebrity Bake Off raised funds for Stand Up to Cancer, an organization that funds cancer treatments and research. McAvoy appeared in the March 16 episode along with Anne-Marie, Dame Kelly Holmes, and David Baddiel.
McAvoy said he’s been “freediving” into baking in fear and preparation for the episode. And apparently that work paid off. The below video highlights each stage of the actor’s work in The Great British Bake Off‘s classic stages: the signature bake, the technical challenge, and the show-stopper. McAvoy’s work garnered compliments from judges Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith at every turn. Watch below (though note that the episode does spoil the winner):
A lot of fantastic things happen here. First of all, McAvoy kindly passes around extra rum from his buttercream. Then there’s the brief but wonderful Gandalf impression. And finally, the absolutely brilliant moment when he explains the premise of His Dark Materials‘ daemons to Paul and Prue.
In His Dark Materials (which will have a third season coming to HBO at a to be announced date), his character Lord Asriel has a snow leopard daemon, Stelmaria. So McAvoy made his showstopper a snow leopard. This one goes by Brendan. While he jokes that it looks like something he would have made as a kid, I think the finished cake is pretty adorable. Prue agrees. And McAvoy’s success throughout all three rounds won him the title of Star Baker.
Visit Stand Up to Cancer to learn more about how you can help.