Dermot O’Leary today confirmed he will no longer be hosting the annual National Television Awards after 10 years as its sole presenter.
The 45-year-old telly and radio star announced he’d be quitting the NTAs with an Instagram statement, joking that he wants to have a holiday next January.
"After 10 years of proudly hosting the National Television Awards, I have decided it’s time to step down as host," he wrote alongside a picture of him holding up one of the iconic golden gongs.
"It’s been a tough decision because we have had a ball over the last decade, but 10 years feels about right. I would like to thank Indigo and my ITV family for a brilliant ten years and look forward to proudly passing on the baton in 2020…and a holiday in January!"
While Dermot hasn’t gone into detail about his decision to stand down, comments he made last month about Ant McPartlin and his telly partner Declan Donnelly have remerged.
Dermot told the Mirror a week before the awards that he thought Holly Willoughby and Graham Norton were just as deserving to win the Best Presenter NTA as Ant and Dec – and even joked about quitting showbiz if the Geordie duo won for the 18th year in a row, after Ant sat out most of last year to get sober.
"If they win it, we should just not do it anymore. If they win it, having not been on television, we may as well just chuck in the towel," he quipped at the time.
"With the greatest respect to the boys, I think Holly has had such a great year, and Graham."
His comments went viral, with Ant branding them "foolish".
"He was kind of joking. I say kind of because it was one of those foolish things to say that’s going to be taken in a serious manner," Ant told the Sun on Sunday.
"He said, ‘Oh my God mate, I’m so sorry’. I challenged him to a fight in the school playground in my response, ‘3pm, schoolbags off’. Then I said, ‘Look I get it, no worries."
Derm later clapped back at publications that said he was "raging" at Ant and Dec’s nomination, claiming on Twitter : "I wouldn’t normally react to this, but… A) I said no such thing. I merely joked that if the boys win this year, we should all chuck in the towel. It was neither serious nor a ‘rage.’
"And… B) If you think on the day after one of the most important votes in parliamentary history, this warrants front page news- then someone really does need to consider their future in journalism. Other than that, you have yourselves a good morning all."
Luckily, the rift was quickly healed when Ant and Dec both made a joke of it at the NTAs, cheekily wishing Dermot a "happy retirement" as they picked up their gong via video link.
Dermot clarified to the Mirror later that: "The NTAs were a lot of fun and that is a joke I have been making for the last five years," he said.
"I texted Ant and Dec like about 20 minutes after the show. I just said ‘thanks for that’ and they went ‘we couldn’t resist it, lets have dinner in a couple of weeks’."
Showbiz and TV editor’s picks
Source: Read Full Article