David Walliams is “furious” that his Britain’s Got Talent co-stars Ant and Dec have been awarded OBEs and he has not, Simon Cowell has said.
TV stalwarts Ant and Dec were given the accolade from the Prince of Wales at Buckingham Palace in January for services to broadcasting and entertainment.
Speaking ahead of Britain’s Got Talent returning to screens this weekend for its 11th series, the show’s creator Simon said of David: “He’s furious.”
Simon quipped: ”He’s gone on an all-out assault this year to suck up to as many people as possible so that he can get there before me, and he probably will.”
Ant agreed that David is perhaps the most jealous of their OBE, and that “everyone thinks he already has one” because of the large amount of charity work he has done over the years.
Judge Alesha Dixon joked that it would be a “nightmare” if David was awarded an OBE.
She said: “I would say David’s more jealous because he’s super-competitive. When he won best judge at the National TV Awards, he reminded us of it every day.
“So can you imagine what would happen if he became an OBE? It would be a nightmare because he would make sure that we all knew, he’d probably wear the medal every single day just to rub it in our faces, just in case we forgot, because he’s very competitive.”
However, former Little Britain star David joked that Simon is “a bit peeved” that Ant and Dec, who have fronted Britain’s Got Talent since its inception in 2007, were given OBEs.
David said: “Simon definitely thinks he should have a knighthood. I don’t know why, I don’t know what he thinks he’s done. Maybe by just being famous for long enough.
“What he doesn’t realise is you have to do something positive, you can’t just spread evil and think that you’ll get one. So I think he’s a bit peeved about it.
“I think he thinks he was going to get one at one stage. Who knows, though it would be annoying to have to call him Sir Simon. I wouldn’t like that, so I really hope it doesn’t happen.”
Simon, David, Alesha and Amanda Holden return to TV screens on Saturday as the show kicks off for another series, which they have promised will be filled with emotional moments, plenty of talented youngsters, a 10ft robot and the programme’s youngest-ever magician.
The programme’s stars have cited the Missing People Choir, made up of people who have had somebody close to them reported as missing, as one of the most tear-jerking acts of the series, and Simon has said they might even win this year.
Ant described their audition as “very emotional”, adding: “It was a hard watch and they played images of the missing people behind them on stage.”
Simon said: “They’ve got a shot at winning, I think. I remember on the day thinking that it was special.”
Stephen Mulhern is returning as the host of ITV2 companion show Britain’s Got More Talent for the 11th year.
For the first time in the show’s history, the spin-off’s reveal show will be broadcast live as Stephen meets the newly announced semi-finalists live in the studio.
Also returning are the golden buzzers, which each judge and presenters Ant and Dec can use just once to send one chosen act straight through to the semi-finals.
Following the pre-recorded audition shows, there will be a week of live semi-finals before the series concludes with the live grand finale.
The winner of the series will go on to win £250,000 and the opportunity to perform at the Royal Variety Performance 2017.
Britain’s Got Talent returns on Saturday April 15 at 8pm on ITV.