With an Ant McPartlin-shaped hole troubling I’m a Celeb bosses even Joel Dommett isn’t keen to take his place…
With Ant McPartlin’s return to I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here! 2018 ruled out as he continues his hiatus away from the spotlight, Now – like the rest of the nation – is keen to find out who will replace him.
And, as we scratch our heads and ponder the fact that Dec without Ant is like bread without butter, we bump into Joel Dommett at a London bash and instantly can’t think of anyone better to step into Ant’s shoes.
Not only does he have us laughing within seconds, he’s experienced at presenting and is a total hunk. But the comedian – who missed out on the crown to Scarlett Moffatt in 2016 but went on to present the sister show I’m a Celeb: Extra Camp in 2017 with her – is adamant he’d never take the job.
‘Those boots are too big to fill,’ he explains, when we ask why he wouldn’t accept the epic promotion. ‘The nation’s pressure on you would just be too huge.’
While we’re still confused as to why any budding TV star wouldn’t want an opportunity like this, one look back at Declan Donnelly’s first solo performance in March and Now quickly understands where Joel is coming from.
Even Dec was nervous at the prospect of presenting the final two episodes of Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway on his own – just weeks after Ant’s drink drive arrest, saying he ‘didn’t sleep an awful lot’ the night before.
Thankfully one thing Joel, 32, is happy to carry on presenting is Extra Camp. ‘I’m quite happy where I am, in the sidecar of the motorbike,’ he jokes.
Although he assumes he’ll be leaving fiancée Hannah Cooper behind and flying down under to resume his role alongside Scarlett Moffatt and Joe Swash later this year, nothing is set in stone yet.
‘I literally can’t plan a week ahead of myself so I just leave it to the people who look after me. At the moment I’m assuming it’s happening and it’s all good,’ he explains
One thing that is troubling Joel, however, is the vicious trolling his close pal Scarlett is currently on the receiving end of.
Be it about her weight, her presenting skills or decisions she’s made about her love life, Joel says it’s ‘frustrating’ to watch.
‘Nobody really knows her. She’s just the loveliest human being. Honestly, she’s so nice, giving, generous and genuinely lovely, so it’s horrible when people speak about her like that,’ he explains. ‘And it’s frustrating because you know those people don’t know her.’
But, while the public may be giving Scarlett a tough time, she’s also one of the names being thrown around as a possible temporary replacement for Ant. And, with Joel ruling himself out of hosting the show alongside Dec, we take a look at who else is in the running to take Ant’s place…
We caught up with Joel at the launch of Cineworld’s ScreenX – a revolutionary new 270-degree cinema experience. For more information visit cineworld.co.uk