In May 2007, he was placed seventh in the list of the UK's 100 most influential gay men and women by British newspaper The Independent. In 2015 Lucas wrote Pompidou for BBC Two. He currently has a regular role in the tenth series of long-running British sci-fi drama Doctor Who as the Twelfth Doctor's companion Nardole.
Lucas was born in Paddington, London, the son of Diana (née Williams) and John Stanley Lucas (1944–1996), who ran a chauffeuring business. Some of Lucas's mother's family fled from Germany during the Second World War. Lucas grew up in a Reform Jewish household. He has had alopecia since his childhood, and lost all of his hair when he was six years old. Lucas's father died of a heart attack aged 52 in Brent, Greater London.
Lucas was educated at Aylward Primary School and The Haberdashers' Aske's Boys' School, an independent school in Borehamwood in Hertfordshire, the same school attended by comic actors David Baddiel and Sacha Baron Cohen. He studied at the University of Bristol between 1993 and 1995. He also spent time with the National Youth Theatre, where he first met future writing partner David Walliams.
Lucas's association with Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer began in 1992. In 1995, Lucas appeared in The Smell of Reeves and Mortimer. He went on to star with them in Shooting Stars. He quickly rose to fame as George Dawes, the giant baby, who would deliver a string of meaningless gags (often in character) and insults before delivering the score, while sitting at and playing a drum kit, often dressed in an adult-sized romper suit. He also appeared on occasion as Marjorie Dawes, George's mother, who also appears in Little Britain.
He again appeared with Reeves & Mortimer in the BBC series Randall & Hopkirk, and Catterick in a variety of roles. In 1999, Lucas paired with David Walliams, with whom he had already worked in both Mash and Peas and Sir Bernard's Stately Homes, to create Rock Profile, a comedy show that spoofed famous musicians and musical personalities. It is notable for being one of their first comedic collaborations, which fuelled their inspiration to then create the well-known show Little Britain. Lucas has also written for actor Sacha Baron Cohen.
His music video appearances include the Damien Hirst-directed video for Blur's "Country House", "Jesusland" by Ben Folds in 2005, "I'm with Stupid" by the Pet Shop Boys and "Vindaloo" and "Naughty Christmas" by Fat Les.
Lucas ventured into the world of stage musicals in 2002, when he took a role in Boy George's musical Taboo at The Venue, London. He played the performance artist Leigh Bowery.
Little Britain is Lucas's most commercially successful work. Originally a radio show on BBC Radio 4, it later became a TV series. Among the many characters he plays in the series, which he writes and acts in along with David Walliams, are apparently "disabled" Andy Pipkin, teenage Bristol chav Vicky Pollard, homophobic homosexual Daffyd Thomas, and insensitive slimming club organiser Marjorie Dawes. In January 2005 Lucas and Walliams were named the most powerful people in TV comedy by Radio Times.
In 2005, he took his first role in a television drama, a supporting part as a Venetian duke in the BBC historical serial Casanova, written by Russell T Davies. Also in 2005, he did voice work in the ITV children's program King Arthur's Disasters alongside Rik Mayall. Since 2006, Lucas has been the voice of the radio and television character Digit Al, devised as part of a public information campaign on digital switchover. On 26 November 2006 he appeared on the BBC Radio 4 programme Desert Island Discs. He made a cameo appearance in Shaun of the Dead as Tom, the cousin of Shaun's friend Yvonne.
In 2007, he released "I'm Gonna Be", originally by The Proclaimers, with Peter Kay as a charity single for Comic Relief. He performed the single as Little Britain character Andy Pipkin, along with Kay playing as Brian Potter. He also starred as Mr. Toad in The Wind in the Willows, a 2006 television adaptation of the Kenneth Grahame novel.
He has appeared in Kath & Kim and Neighbours (the latter alongside David Walliams as Little Britain characters Lou and Andy), as well as a cameo role, playing 'Chris' or 'Jammy' at the wedding fayre, in the BBC Three sitcom Gavin & Stacey. Lucas has co-written (with Walliams) and performed in a new series of Little Britain USA for HBO.
Lucas was the first celebrity to appear in 2008's Big Brother Celebrity Hijack on E4.
On 9 April 2009, the series Kröd Mändoon and the Flaming Sword of Fire, featuring Matt Lucas as a regular performer, premièred on Comedy Central, the first major comedy series which Lucas had worked on since Little Britain. In 2010, Lucas played Tweedledee and Tweedledum in Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland.
Starting in February 2010, Lucas began hosting his own radio show, And The Winner Is, in which he handed out a fictional series of awards based on nominations by his guests.
On 3 October 2010, Matt played Thénardier in the 25th Anniversary Concerts of Les Misérables, at the O2 Arena in London. A year later, from 23 June to 10 September 2011, he reprised the role at The Queen's Theatre, in the West End. He has since collaborated with Alfie Boe, who played Jean Valjean, to record a duet of "The Impossible Dream" on Boe's debut album.
Also in 2011, Lucas lent his voice to the CGI film Gnomeo and Juliet, as well as playing a small role as the roommate of Kristen Wiig in the comedy Bridesmaids.
On Christmas Day 2010, the BBC began showing Matt Lucas and David Walliams' new series, Come Fly with Me. The show followed the familiar style of Walliams and Lucas each playing multiple characters but, unlike Little Britain, it focused entirely on the working environment of the airline industry. In an interview shown on BBC 3 on 9 February 2011, it was stated that the creators considered bringing travel agent character Carol Beer from Little Britain to the new series, but decided against it, as they didn't want viewers to see the new show as merely a spinoff. Instead, all new characters were introduced.
On 28 March 2012, Lucas appeared as the "Generation X" guest on the Australian game show Talkin' 'Bout Your Generation.
On 10 April 2012, Lucas's own BBC One show The Matt Lucas Awards began. This can be understood as a send-up of awards programmes in general, inviting a number of panelists (generally speaking, comedians) to give their nominations for awards for a series of prizes concerning trivial topics.
Lucas also starred in the dark comedy Small Apartments released in February 2013 alongside James Caan, Billy Crystal, Johnny Knoxville, Juno Temple with other cameo performances by notable actors.
On 21 February 2013, Lucas appeared on the NBC series Community as Toby, an English friend of Abed Nadir. In 2014, Lucas played Ray Thomas in The Life of Rock with Brian Pern.
Lucas launched a new comedy series called Pompidou for BBC Two. The show began airing on 1 March 2015.
In May 2016, Lucas reprised his role as "Tweedledee/Tweedledum" in Tim Burton's Alice Through the Looking Glass, sequel to Alice in Wonderland.
On 14 June 2016, it was announced Lucas would be joining the BBC series Doctor Who for its tenth series, where he is set to reprise the character Nardole, which he had played in the 2015 and 2016 Christmas specials, "The Husbands of River Song" and "The Return of Doctor Mysterio" respectively.
On 16 February 2017, Lucas was awarded an Honorary Degree "Doctor of Letters" by the University of Bristol, where he had studied for two years in the 1990s but had left before completing his degree course.
Lucas is a patron of the Karen Morris Memorial Trust, a UK charity for leukaemia patients and their families. In April 2004, he appeared on Celebrity Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? and won £62,500 for the charity.
Lucas is gay and said he first suspected it at the age of seven. In December 2006, Lucas entered into a civil partnership with Kevin McGee, in a ceremony in Central London. In attendance were various celebrities, including Barbara Windsor, Neil Tennant, Elton John, and Courtney Love. Their civil partnership was dissolved through the High Court in 2008, ending what was a six-year relationship. He was raised Jewish and variously described himself as an atheist and a "fairly secular Jew".
From 2012 to 2015, Lucas lived with his Bridesmaids co-star Rebel Wilson in West Hollywood. They remain good friends.
OfficialBoyd Hilton; Matt Lucas; David Walliams (2006). Inside Little Britain. London: Ebury Press. ISBN 0-09-191231-8.
UnofficialNeil Simpson (2006). Yeah But No But: The Biography of Matt Lucas and David Walliams. London: John Blake. ISBN 1-84454-258-0.