Belfast Telegraph

Ant and Dec: Old BGT clips forced us to confront dodgy clothes and hairdos

The TV stalwarts said filming the all-star spin-off made it clear how they had aged.

Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly at the Bafta TV awards (Matt Crossick/PA)
Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly at the Bafta TV awards (Matt Crossick/PA)

By Alex Green, PA Entertainment Reporter

Ant and Dec have said filming Britain’s Got Talent: The Champions forced them to confront the “dodgy clothes and dodgy hairdos” they sported during their early years.

The pair have hosted Simon Cowell’s acclaimed talent show series since it began in 2007 – with the show’s high profile helping rocket them to fame.

The Saturday Night Takeaway duo said watching old clips of themselves during recording at Wembley’s SSE Arena had made them realise how much they had aged.

Ant McPartlin said: “Oh God, I’m just seeing some dodgy hairstyles.

“Actually they’re not too dodgy, it’s kind of the pre-Britain’s Got Talent hairdos, it’s more Byker Grove days that we had the dodgy clothes and dodgy hairdos.”

Declan Donelly added: “You can tell the ageing process throughout watching the show.

“That’s the problem we’ve got, it’s not just watching the last 10 years of Britain’s Got Talent clips – it’s all the stuff before that.

Ant and Dec arriving for Britain’s Got Talent audtions in 2013 (Yui Mok/PA)

“So we’ve got a lot of dodgy hair and dodgy outfits out there.

“It’s amazing as well because Connie Talbot’s 12 years older and we would look 12 years older, yet Amanda looks 12 years younger. Simon is looking good at the moment, isn’t he?”

The all-star spin-off series pits former contestants and winners against each other, and will be the first time Cowell has aired a British version of the Champions format.

It will see the judging panel of Cowell, Amanda Holden, David Walliams and Alesha Dixon return to pass judgment on an array of performers.

Returning judge Amanda Holden (Ian West/PA)

McPartlin said the live recordings had felt like “a cross between the Olympics and Eurovision every night” because the acts had been pooled from across the globe.

He also remarked on Cowell’s recent dramatic weight loss, saying: “He’s lost a bit of weight.”

Donnelly added: “Yeah, he’s looking good.

“He’s gone all vegan… vegan shepherd’s pie, vegan sausages, what’s that about?

Amanda Holden and Alesha Dixon, with Anthony McPartlin, David Walliams and Declan Donnelly (John Stillwell/PA)

“Is that the secret? I’ll have to look into that.”

Music mogul Cowell said Holden had told him she felt like a rock star at Wembley.

He said: “Amanda said she felt like a rock star walking out on that stage, she loves all that! I think we all got a buzz.”

Holden, however, said arriving for the first show nearly reduced her to tears.

I felt like a member of BTS or One Direction walking out on that stage Amanda Holden

“When I walked into Wembley Arena for the first time and just saw the hugeness of it, I nearly burst into tears, I’m not even joking,” she said.

“I felt really emotional because having been on the show from the very beginning and to see it grow into this sensational, epic juggernaut it is now, it’s just amazing.”

She added: “I felt like a member of BTS or One Direction walking out on that stage.”

“You walk on to the stage and everybody just goes nuts.”

Walliams said he had found it “odd” to judge acts that had already proved themselves on the international stage.

The Little Britain star and children’s author said: “It feels odd to critique them too much when they have already done so well.

“With the international acts, it’s a chance to get to know them, and ask them a few questions.”

Britain’s Got Talent: The Champions begins on ITV on Saturday August 31.



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