Entertainment

Claims Ant and Dec will be axed from I’m a Celebrity slammed as ‘utter nonsense’ by ITV

Claims ITV were thinking of axing national treasures Ant and Dec from I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! have left some fans worried.

The Geordie pair have presented the ITV reality TV show for 15 years, since it launched in 2002.

But rumours sparked by the Daily Star on Sunday in the wake of Ant McPartlins’s arrest for drink-driving dismayed legions of fans, as it was speculated that ITV would look to revitalise the show with new presenters at the helm.

But, thankfully, there will be thousands if not millions of relieved telly-lovers as ITV has responded to the whirling rumours in strong and definitive terms.

The Daily Star had reported that, with Ant taking time away from the screen to recover from his drinking problem, show chiefs weren’t wholly sure about letting Dec present by himself.

“There’s a very real possibility that Ant won’t be available to present the next series of the jungle,” an insider was said to have told the newspaper.

Claims Ant and Dec will be axed from I'm a Celebrity slammed as 'utter nonsense' by ITV

Ant and Dec have co-presented I’m A Celeb since 2002, when the show launched

“Production staff who work on the show were worried that meant it may not go ahead and they’d be out of a job. A lot of crew members were in tears.

“While Ant and Dec are a big part of the show, they aren’t bigger than the show. They are confident it would still work without them.

“If their return is going to be a problem, producers aren’t afraid to axe them from the format and get new presenters in.”

Despite their popularity with the public, bosses are thought to not want just one of the two presenting a show alone – “they would rather have neither”, the Star’s source added.

Claims Ant and Dec will be axed from I'm a Celebrity slammed as 'utter nonsense' by ITV

Ant McPartlin on Saturday Night Takeaway

ITV has since slammed the rumours as “utter nonsense”.

Speaking to the Mirror , a spokesman for the TV giant said: “It is utter nonsense to suggest that Ant and Dec are set to be replaced on I’m A Celebrity.”

Ant and Dec’s spokesman refused to comment when approached by Mirror Online.

Claims Ant and Dec will be axed from I'm a Celebrity slammed as 'utter nonsense' by ITV

Ant and Dec in the jungle

Dec is said to be expecting his first child with wife Ali Astall, who is thought to have just passed the 12-week mark in her pregnancy.

Ali, 40, is reported to have fallen pregnant shortly after Dec’s return from the jungle in December 2017, meaning she’ll be due in September – two months before her husband would normally be packing his cases to head back Down Under.

Claims Ant and Dec will be axed from I'm a Celebrity slammed as 'utter nonsense' by ITV

Ant McPartlin and Dec Donnelly on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!

If the announcement is true – Dec, Ali and their people are yet to publicly confirm the happy news – the new dad could be happier at home getting to know his little arrival rather than working nearly 10,000 miles away from his family.

Ant, meanwhile, has cancelled all his upcoming work commitments and privately those close to him are wondering whether he’ll be in full health by the time I’m A Celebrity rolls around.

It’s expected that he won’t be part of the presenting team when Britain’s Got Talent returns to screens this spring, and ITV has already decided he won’t be working on the final two episodes of Saturday Night Takeaway – instead, Dec will present alone.

Source reference