A member of Ant McPartlin’s inner circle has apparently blasted reports suggesting the presenter’s imminent return to TV is linked with Holly Willoughby’s performance on I’m A Celebrity as a “complete lie”.
An article claimed Ant had not been in contact with Syco – Simon Cowell’s production company – to confirm he would be taking part in the next series of Britain’s Got Talent, scheduled to begin on ITV next month, before the jungle reality series started in November.
Pals of the star were also quoted as saying Ant became “desperate” to get back to work after finding it hard to see This Morning favourite Holly fill in for him – and do so well at it.
It was also claimed, without any mention of contractual obligations, how the 43-year-old realised his telly position was not necessarily guaranteed.
An unnamed friend was reported to have said: “He likes Holly, but it was difficult to see her doing his show.
“It was such a big success that it brought it home to him everyone can be replaced.”
However, a spokesperson has denied claims the Geordie star still hadn’t been in touch with Syco about resuming his BGT duties as recently as five weeks ago to the Mirror’s website.
The rep is said to have dismissed the piece as a “complete fabrication” and insisted Ant had been scheduled in for a comeback for “many months”.
“It is also a complete lie to say that Syco were not aware of Ant’s plans to return to BGT until recently,” the source is reported to have said.
“Senior staff at ITV and Syco were aware many months ago.”
Ant and longtime presenting partner Dec Donnelly announced in August their light entertainment show Saturday Night Takeaway would be rested until 2020 following Ant’s drink driving arrest earlier in the year.
He also decided to step away from his other TV duties while he focused on his personal issues, pulling out of this year’s I’m A Celebrity.
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