Ant And Dec Forced To Pull Out Of New Britain's Got Talent Spin-Off, As Close Friend Steps In As Replacement

Britain’s Got Talent: The Ultimate Magician will see some of the show's most spellbinding magical acts return.
Ant and Dec
Ant and Dec
Mark Cuthbert via Getty Images

Ant and Dec have been forced to pull out of filming a new Britain’s Got Talent spin-off due to sickness.

The pair, who have presented the ITV talent show since it began in 2007, had been due to front the recently-announced magic special, entitled Britain’s Got Talent: The Ultimate Magician, which is recording this week.

However, on Wednesday, it was announced they had both fallen ill and been replaced on the show by close friend and frequent collaborator Stephen Mulhern.

An ITV spokesperson said (via TV Zone): “Ant and Dec are both unwell and have postponed all work commitments until they recover. Sadly, this means they were unable to film Britain’s Got Talent: The Ultimate Magician.

“Whilst we wish them a speedy recovery, we are thrilled to confirm that BGT’s favourite magician, Stephen Mulhern has stepped in.”

Stephen Mulhern
Stephen Mulhern
VALERY HACHE via Getty Images

Stephen previously hosted companion show Britain’s Got More Talent on ITV2 until it was axed in 2019, and fronts a regular segment on Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway.

BGT: The Ultimate Magician will see Amanda Holden, David Walliams and Alesha Dixon joined by one half of world famous magic duo Penn and Teller, Penn Jillette, as a guest judge.

He is replacing Simon Cowell on the panel, who has other commitments.

Announcing the show earlier this week, ITV said: “We’ve witnessed some of the most spellbinding magical acts on BGT over the years, now they’re going head-to-head with some of the world’s most talented magicians.”

As yet, there is no air date for BGT: The Ultimate Magician, but ITV said it would be “coming soon”.

A regular series of Britain’s Got Talent is also expected to begin filming in the new year.


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