Exclusive: Bruno Tonioli, 65, will not be returning to Strictly Come Dancing for the remainder of the series as his return from the US is considered “extremely dangerous” by the presidents
- The Italian judge, 65, was due to join the committee after returning to the UK after his role in Dancing With The Stars, the US version of Strictly
- But the presidents of the show and Bruno decided it would be safer for the veteran judge to stay in the U.S. and continue his pre-eminent role in showcasing the results Sunday night.
- Shirley Palace, Craig Reville Horwood and Mozzi Mapooz will return to the commission this weekend after her isolation period, complete as a trilogy
- In August, Craig, who has appeared on the show alongside Bruno since 2004, said he was confident the choreographer would make a “ triumphant comeback ” in 2021.
Bruno Tonioli will not be returning to Strictly Come Dancing for the rest of the current series, as MailOnline can reveal.
The 65-year-old Italian judge was due to take his place on the live shows committee after returning to the UK after completing the final series of Dancing With The Stars, the US version of Strictly.
But the presidents of the show and Bruno decided it would be safer for the veteran judge to stay in the US and continue his pre-eminent role in showing the results on Sunday night via the satellite link.
Bruno Tonioli will not be returning to Strictly Come Dancing for the rest of the current series, as MailOnline can reveal (pictured earlier this week)
A source close to Bruno said: “After a lot of thinking, it’s very dangerous for Bruno. I’ve already been hit hard by Covid …
They did not want to take the risk. Bruno loves the show and will watch it more than ever from the US and gives his feedback on the Sunday show.
Bruno was due to be sacked for two weeks after his return from the US before his return on BBC1, however the plan was thwarted.
Incumbent referees Shirley Palace, Craig Revel Horwood and Mutsi Mapuz, who will return to the commission this weekend after her period of isolation after an urgent trip to Germany, will complete the series as a trilogy.
Starring role: The incumbent referees Shirley Palace, Craig Revel Horwood and Mutsi Mapouz, who will return to the committee this weekend after their isolation period, will complete the series as a trilogy
Originally reported in August, it would return later this year after abandoning the show amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Bruno usually shuttles between London and Los Angeles to sit on the UK’s long-running show board as well as her American counterpart.
But due to the global coronavirus pandemic affecting travel restrictions, the Italian choreographer preferred the American version when forced to choose only one.
At the time, insiders said the BBC presidents were eager to move Bruno to the UK and hoped he could return to the stern Final later this year.
The Whole Gang: Bruno was photographed alongside fellow judges last year
A source told the Daily Star at the time: “ Everyone at Strictly was devastated when they found out Bruno would pull out of the series this year.
The travel restrictions imposed by the Coronavirus meant that he could not fly back and forth to do both shows this year, so he chose to dance with the stars. But Strictly’s producers were still keen on having it pop if it could.
Plans are now thwarted due to travel concerns in the pandemic, which means Bruno will continue to make his distant appearance.
Hard work: Bruno was due to be sacked for two weeks after returning from the US before his return on BBC1 (Bruno, pictured, Dancing With The Stars earlier this month)
In August, fellow Judge Craig, who has appeared on the show alongside Bruno since 2004, said he was confident the choreographer would make a “ triumphant comeback ” in 2021.
He said: They may cast the guest judges for entertainment. Then when everything is back to normal, Bruno can be back victorious! “
There has been speculation about the big-name stars as a possible replacement for Bruno including Sherrill. But Craig said he doubted whether the pop star would appear in the upcoming series, saying, “Nice girl, but I don’t think that will happen.”
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