The TV star has decided to take the year off
After weeks of speculation, Ant McPartlin has revealed he won’t be returning to I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! this year alongside Declan Donnelly.
The TV star checked himself back into rehab in March after he was convicted of drink driving following a scary car crash.
But now a statement from his PR has confirmed 41-year-old Ant won’t be back on our telly screens later this year.
It reads: ‘Ant McPartlin today announces he will continue to take a break from all television presenting roles until 2019. Ant will not present ‘I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here!’ in November this year.
‘In addition Ant and Dec have made the joint decision not to present a new series of ‘Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway’ in Spring 2019.’
Ant was last seen on TV in March on Saturday Night Takeaway but missed the last two episodes after he pleaded guilty to driving under the influence of alcohol and was given a fine of £86,000.
It’s yet unknown whether Ant will be replaced, or if Dec will be forced to go it alone again.
The statement continues: ‘Neither Ant & Dec nor ITV wanted to compromise the quality of the show and therefore felt it was better to rest the series next year. They will instead bring the show back in 2020, bigger and better than ever.’
And following the shock news, Ant has also spoken out while thanking his best pal for his ‘continued support’.
‘My recovery is going very well and for that to continue having spoken to Dec and ITV, I have made the decision to take the rest of the year off’, the Geordie star said.
‘I’d like to thank both Dec and ITV for their continued support and I look forward to getting back to work in the new year.’
TV presenter Dec, 42, added: ‘Whilst I am obviously sad at the thought of being without my best friend in Australia this year, I am proud of the work Ant has been doing privately and I am fully supportive of his decision.
‘I’m looking forward to us both being reunited on screen in 2019.’
ITV Director of Television Kevin Lygo has said: ‘ITV is completely supportive of Ant taking as much time as he needs in his recovery and of this mutual decision to rest Takeaway in 2019.
‘Ant is clearly making good progress and we wish him all the very best and look forward to him returning to ITV next year.
‘An announcement on I’m A Celebrity plans will be made in due course.’
Ant and Dec have presented I’m A Celebrity together every year since 2002, with the series usually starting in November.