Bruno Tonioli set to replace Britain's Got Talent David Walliams

Former Strictly judge Bruno Tonioli set to replace ousted Britain’s Got Talent star David Walliams after furious ITV bosses who wanted Alan Carr were overruled by Simon Cowell

  • Bruno Tonioli will replace David Walliams on Britain’s Got Talent judging panel 
  • The decision comes after a battle between Tonioli and Alan Carr, 46, for the role 
  • Carr is understood to be ‘devastated’ at losing out on the job he thought was his
  • It is believed that ITV bosses were overruled by fellow BGT judge Simon Cowell  

Former Strictly judge Bruno Tonioli will replace David Walliams on the Britain’s Got Talent judging panel after furious ITV bosses were overruled by Simon Cowell.

The decision comes after a battle between Tonioli – a close friend of Cowell’s – and comedian Alan Carr for the role. The show’s judges Alesha Dixon and Amanda Holden were told the identity of their new colleague in the last two days.

Tonioli is yet to sign the contract but the job has been formally offered to him following at tug of war between ITV and BGT boss Simon Cowell who insisted that he had the role following Walliams’ departure.

Terms such as money are being thrashed out but he will be at the auditions at the London Palladium on Tuesday alongside Cowell, Ms Holden and Ms Dixon.

Former Strictly judge Bruno Tonioli will replace David Walliams on the Britain’s Got Talent judging panel

Shamed actor and author Walliams, 51, was last year forced to leave the show after ten years following vile remarks he made about contestants during auditions in 2020

Carr, 46, is understood to be ‘devastated’ at losing out on the job which he thought was his.

Friends of the star say that he told he would be joining the show by those close to it two weeks ago.

One told the Daily Mail: ‘He is trying to keep his head up, he thought that he had it. It is really disappointing for him. BGT have really missed a trick, especially with the on-screen chemistry between him and Amanda.’ M

Meanwhile, a source close to the show said: ‘It is one the most peculiar events in showbusiness in recent years. Alan was told that he had the job and then all of sudden Bruno’s name popped up. It is so bizarre.

‘Some ITV bosses are cross at the decision, their preference was Alan as did most involved in the show who were really over the moon at the prospect of having join them for series. They all wanted him but Cowell was against it, he wanted his friend.’ Tonioli joining BGT means that there now two former Strictly judges on the panel – something ITV bosses are understood to have been against.

Alesha Dixon defected from the BBC One show to Cowell’s reality series in 2012.

Carr, famous for his much-loved Channel 4 show Alan Carr: Chatty Man, was also allegedly changing the dates of his filming commitments on BBC show Ru Paul’s Drag Race so he could be at the BGT auditions.

Terms such as money are being thrashed out but he will be at the auditions at the London Palladium on Tuesday alongside Cowell, Ms Holden and Ms Dixon

Carr, 46, is understood to be ‘devastated’ at losing out on the job which he thought was his.

He thought he had the job – and had even begun making arrangements for his on-screen clothing – until he saw reports that Toniloi also in line to take over from Walliams.

Shamed actor and author Walliams, 51, was last year forced to leave the show after ten years following vile remarks he made about contestants during auditions in 2020.

It was reported in November that Walliams, 51, stood down from his role, although sources close to the show say he ‘jumped before he was pushed.’

His exit came after he described an elderly contestant as a c**t and made vile sexual remarks about a woman taking part during auditions in January 2020 at the London Palladium.

In one incident, picked up on the show’s microphones, an older performer engaged in light-hearted banter with the judges in which he made a jibe about Walliams.

After the audition, the pensioner left, and Walliams is said to have described him as a ‘c**t’ three times.

In a separate incident, after a female contestant had walked off stage, Walliams remarked: ‘She’s like the slightly boring girl you meet in the pub that thinks you want to f*** them, but you don’t.’ He later added: ‘I know, she’s just like: “Oh, f*** off!” I was saying, she thinks you want to f*** her, but you don’t.

Tonioli is yet to sign the contract but the job has been formally offered to him following at tug of war between ITV and BGT boss Simon Cowell

Carr thought he had the job – and had even begun making arrangements for his on-screen clothing

Walliams, one of the UK’s best-known television personalities and children’s book authors, was forced to apologise for his outbursts – but he insisted that they were private conversations

‘It’s the last thing on your mind, but she’s like: “Yep, I bet you do!”

‘No I don’t! I had a bit of a b***r, but now it’s going, it’s now shrivelled up inside my body.’

Walliams, one of the UK’s best-known television personalities and children’s book authors, was forced to apologise for his outbursts – but he insisted that they were private conversations.

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