Anton du Beke speaks out after replacing Bruno Tonioli on Strictly Come Dancing

Anton du Beke has spoken out about replacing Bruno Tonioli on Strictly Come Dancing.

Strictly Come Dancing will be back on BBC One later this month for its landmark twentieth series.

Returning to the judging panel once again are Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse and Head Judge Shirley Ballas.

Anton Du Beke - (C) BBC - Photographer: Guy Levy
Anton Du Beke – (C) BBC – Photographer: Guy Levy

They will be joined by former Strictly professional dancer Anton Du Beke who last year stood in for Bruno Tonioli.

Speaking about taking over the role full time, Anton said he had no expectation when first stepping behind the judges’ desk during the pandemic.

“I always knew it could be taken away, however good I was on the judging panel. But I took the same attitude as I did when I was competing, which is that I can only control what I do,” he explained. “I was pleased with my performance on the show.

“But I was only stepping in. If Bruno had wanted to come back, the bosses couldn’t say to him, ‘We don’t want you’.”

And had that happened, Anton said he’d have returned to his role as a pro dancer: “I can’t think of anything better than being on Strictly.”

In a new interview with The Sun, Anton went on to reveal he’d not had the chance to speak to Bruno yet.

“I haven’t spoken to him. I haven’t spoken to any of the judges,” Bruno shared. “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’.”

Strictly Come Dancing airs on BBC One with the new series launching on 17 September.

Celebrities confirmed for 2022’s Strictly Come Dancing line up include TV presenter Helen Skelton, Bros frontman Matt Goss, Loose Women’s Kaye Adams, former England footballer Tony Adams MBE and singer, TV & radio presenter Fleur East.