‘I haven’t spoken to him’: Strictly’s Anton Du Beke admits he hasn’t been in touch with Bruno Tonioli since replacing him… but shuts down feud rumours between the pair

He has taken over Bruno Tonioli’s seat on the Strictly Come Dancing judging panel, since the dancer permanently quit the show earlier this year.

And gearing up for the show’s pending return, Anton Du Beke has revealed that he and Bruno haven’t been in contact since the takeover, explaining: ‘I haven’t spoken to him’.

But despite the little contact, the 56-year-old dancer shut down rumours of a feud between the two – explaining that he would’ve stepped aside if the former judge had wanted his seat back.

‘I haven’t spoken to him’: Strictly’s Anton Du Beke, 56, has admitted that he hasn’t been in touch with Bruno Tonioli since replacing him on the show’s judging panel

Anton was confirmed as a judge for the upcoming season of the show earlier this year, after Bruno stepped down to focus on US version Dancing With The Stars.

And in the weeks following the news, the former judge made a jibe at his replacement as he joked that Anton ‘needed the money’. 

But talking recently to The Sun, Anton addressed the moment as light-hearted, admitting he saw the funny side.

Pals: But despite the little contact, the dancer shut down rumours of a feud between the two – explaining that he would’ve stepped aside if the former judge wanted his seat back (Anton and Bruno pictured together in 2019)

Coming soon: Anton is set to join Shirley Ballas (far left), Craig Revel Horwood (centre right) and Motsi Mabuse (far right) on the judging panel for the upcoming season

‘I think he was just mucking around, I can imagine him saying it. I think it looked more punchy than it was, so I didn’t get the hump over it at all, it actually made me laugh,’ cleared up the star.

Continuing that they hadn’t been in contact since he took over the role, the dancer shared: ‘I haven’t spoken to him, I haven’t spoken to any of the judges.

‘It was all down to circumstance really, the situation with flying still isn’t ideal — we all know how many flights are being cancelled — and Bruno said to the BBC, ‘Listen, I can’t do both shows, thank you very much and good luck”. 

MailOnline have contacted representatives of Bruno Tonioli for comment. 

Anton has been a professional dancer on the show since its first season in 2004, before making the switch to the judging panel when the Covid-19 pandemic hit.

Pandemic: Anton began judging on the show in 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic hit, with regular judge Bruno unable to travel back and forth from his US home

With long-standing judge Bruno, who is based in the US, unable to travel back and forth to the UK – Anton temporarily took his place. 

But as Bruno stepped down from the role for good earlier this year, Anton’s place was made permanent as he is set to reprise his judging role in the upcoming season. 

Sharing that he was only ‘stepping in’, the judge explained that he would’ve moved out of the way if Bruno wanted to come back following the Covid break.

Cheeky: After Anton’s judging place was announced, Bruno made a jibe at his replacement as he joked that he’needed the money’

Professional: The twinkle-toed star joined the BBC show to perform routines with a celebrity partner for its first series in 2004  (pictured with actress Patsy Palmer in 2005)

Continuing that all would not have been lost, he said that it was Bruno’s job originally and he wouldn’t have stood in the way, and would have returned to being a professional.

But the TV star doesn’t need to go back to dancing, as he is set to judge the new batch of contestants alongside Head Judge Shirley Ballas, Craig Revel Horwood and Motsi Mabuse.

With big names including Kym Marsh, Kaye Adams and Matt Goss set to hit the dance floor, the show returns to BBC One on September 17. 



Age: 46

Profession: Coronation Street star and presenter

Kym says: ‘I’m so delighted that this year they have! I’m a huge fan of the show and can’t believe I’m going to go from watching at home in my pyjamas to actually dancing in front of the judges in a glittery dress.’


Age: 34

Profession: Radio presenter 

Richie says: ‘This is a dream come true! I cannot wait to get in those sparkles and sequins and shimmy across the most famous dance floor in the world!’


Age: 27

Profession: Former athlete 

Ellie says: ‘To be asked to be part of the Strictly family is just so exciting and I cannot wait, it’s going to so much fun.’


Age: 26

Profession: Radio DJ

Tyler says: ‘It’s a show that means so much to me and my family and I can’t wait to seriously shake a leg on that shiny dance floor… with a side of sequins.’



Age: 38

Profession: Comedian

Ellie says: ‘Well, cover me in fake tan and roll me in sequins! I’m absolutely over the moon to be a part of Strictly 2022!’


Profession: Retired footballer and manager

Tony says:  ‘To say I’m excited is an understatement – the lure of the sequins and the call of the salsa has me swapping my battered old football boots for a set of Strictly soft shoes’



Age: 38

Profession: EastEnders actor

James says ‘I’m not known for my shimmy or my twinkle toes – in fact my kids regularly laugh at my dad dancing but it’s an honour to be asked and I’m going to give it my best shot.’


 Age: 39

Profession: TV and radio broadcaster

Helen says: ‘I’m really excited to get stuck into a fun adventure. My family and friends have always loved the show and can’t wait for me to get started’


Age: 46

Profession: Actor

Will says: ‘I know it will be a huge challenge but that’s what life is all about. This is also my Mum’s favourite show and she’s had a really tough few years so I’m doing this is for her as well. Bring it on!’


 Age: 59 

Profession: Television presenter 

Kaye says: ‘I said I wanted to make the last year of my fifties memorable and i can’t think of a better way of doing it than showing the world my two left feet. Pray for me!’ 


Age: 37

Profession: Comedian

Jayde says: ‘I’ve been a massive fan of the show for years. I feel like I’m watching myself in a dream and I can’t believe I’ve manifested this.’


Age: 53

Profession: Singer

Matt says: ‘I’ve been reclusive, I come and work and then go back to America. I thought, it’s time for me to come home and get out of my own way’


 Age: 21

Profession: Singer 

Molly says: ‘I already know it’s gonna be an experience of a lifetime and I can’t wait to meet the rest of the Strictly family I’ll be sharing it with.’


Age: 34 

Profession: Singer

Fleur says: ‘I’m equally nervous and thrilled to be part of this year’s Strictly line up. I’m excited to learn new skills and I want to soak up every moment of this magical experience.’


Age: 35

Profession: Wildlife cameraman and presenter

Hamza says: ‘I am absolutely over the moon to be joining Strictly 2022. Never in a million years did I think I’d be on such a cool show.’



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