Ant and Dec are one of the country’s best-loved double acts – and they’re also one of the best-paid.
But according to a report, the Geordie duo owe some of their success to a THIRD man, who it’s claimed helps them write a lot of their jokes.
And it’s suggested that the ‘secret’ helper played a massive role in getting the loveable pair back on track following Ant’s well-publicised difficulties this year.
The Mirror claims that Andy Milligan has been Ant and Dec’s only full-time writer for the past 12 years, helping them to write gags for I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here, Saturday Night Takeaway and Britain’s Got Talent.
He’s also said to have co-written the boys’ autobiography Ooh! What A Lovely Pair: Our Story.
And Milligan’s Twitter page appears to back this up, with his profile stating: “Written all things Ant & Dec for a canny while.”
A source told the newspaper: “It might be Ant and Dec on screen, but off it they regularly work as a trio, and it’s Ant and Dec and Andy.
“The boys have him involved in all of their big shows… [they] haven’t made a project without him in more than a decade.”
The article claims that while I’m A Celebrity is on, Milligan sleeps during the day and then arrives at the camp at midnight to spend more than three hours writing funny lines for the 42-year-old presenters.
Ant and Dec then turn up a few hours later to “hone” the gags before they go on air.
And The Mirror’s article revealed that Milligan’s input has been a massive help to the boys at the end of what’s been a very difficult year.
Back in June, Ant checked into rehab for drink and prescription drug problems, and it was later reported that he’d moved out of the home he shares with his wife Lisa Armstrong, although she’s blasted rumours of a split on multiple occasions.
It led many people to speculate that Ant wouldn’t be joining his old buddy Dec in presenting this year’s I’m A Celebrity.
Thankfully, though, Ant made the trip and the duo have been on sparkling form – reportedly thanks, in large part, to Milligan.