‘Got to be Anton’ Lorraine Kelly blasts BBC if they don’t give Bruno Strictly job to Anton

Strictly: Lorraine says Anton Du Beke should return as judge

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On Wednesday morning, it was reported that Italian choreographer Bruno Tonioli had quit the BBC dance competition Strictly Come Dancing due to commitments in the US. Talking about the news, Lorraine took aim at the BBC if it didn’t make professional dancer Anton Du Beke a permanent judge after he stood in for Bruno during the last series.

Introducing the show from one of its ad breaks, Lorraine got straight down to business and gave her verdict on Bruno leaving the BBC flagship show.

She expressed: “Welcome back. Well, it’s been reported this morning that Bruno Tonioli will not be returning to Strictly this year.

“He has apparently decided to stay in America to focus his attention on the US version, Dancing With The Stars.

“No official word yet on his replacement – oh, come on! It’s got to be Anton du Beke! Course it has! It’d be silly if it was anyone else. So yeah, it’ll work out very well for both shows.”

Due to the coronavirus pandemic in 2021, Bruno was unable to make it back to the UK to judge the competition and the eager contestants taking part.

In 2020, Bruno appeared on the show via video link, but last year, Anton Du Beke stood in as judge.

It has been reported that Bruno will no longer be on the judging panel as he is focussing on Dancing With The Stars.

A source told The Daily Mail: “Bruno has quit the show for good, he’s going to be a judge only on [the US version] Dancing With The Stars from now on.”

Express.co.uk has contacted the BBC who declined to comment on the reports.

Anton has been a dancer on the show since its inception in 2004 and has stolen the hearts of the nation ever since.

The latest series is in the works, but it is yet to be confirmed whether Anton will be returning to the judging panel.

In April, the official list of professional dancers who would be returning to the show was released, with Anton nowhere to be seen on it.

This led to speculation that he would be sitting alongside Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse and Shirley Ballas once again.

Speaking to Sussex Life Magazine, Anton previously said he was “hoping” to return to the chair: “I’m hoping to get a call to say, ‘Look, here you go, come back judging please’.

“But we’ll wait and see. I’d like to think I’d be on the show in one way or another.”

The news as to whether Anton will be returning to the panel is still yet to come, but he recently revealed that he would be joining Cooking with the Stars.

Other celebs taking part will include The Chase’s Anne Hegerty, Josie Gibson, Maura Higgins, Dame Kelly Holmes, Dr Ranj Singh, comedian Joe Wilkinson and DJ Woody Cook.

Anton took to his Twitter and Instagram to share the news: “Best bib & tucker, my loves – literally… Delighted to be invited to partake in the next series of @ITV ’s #CookingWithTheStars!

“Under the expert tutelage of @RosemaryShrager, I’ll swap sashays for sautés and voltas for veloutés this summer… details soon! Much love, Anton.” (sic)

Strictly Come Dancing returns later this year on BBC One.

Lorraine airs weekdays from 9am on ITV.

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