Holly Willoughby has confirmed that she will co-host I’m A Celebrity as Ant McPartlin takes a break, saying: “These are big shoes … to keep warm for a little bit.”
The presenter will join Declan Donnelly in Australia to front this year’s series of the ITV show.
Dec’s usual co-host, Ant, previously announced he is stepping back from TV commitments and public appearances following a drink-driving conviction which saw him banned from the road for 20 months and fined £86,000.
Announcing her role in I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here!, Willoughby said in a statement: “I couldn’t be more excited to have been asked to stand alongside Dec for the next jungle adventure.
“I love Ant and want to send him my best wishes and support for a continued recovery.
“These are big shoes, not to fill, but just to keep warm for a little bit… Honestly, I’m a huge fan of I’m A Celebrity and actually feel like I’ve won a competition to go and hang out on my favourite show!
“When is it a good time to tell Dec I’m scared of everything that moves?!”
Dec said This Morning host Willoughby was his first choice.
“I am hugely grateful to Holly for agreeing to accompany me to Australia this year,” he said.
“She was at the top of my list and I’m thrilled she said yes. It will be a different kind of series but we will try our best to ensure it is no less fun and eventful for our loyal viewers.
“I am also pleased to hear Holly is scared of everything. I am almost stupidly excited at the thought of watching her during the eating trials!”
ITV’s Director of Television, Kevin Lygo, said: “Holly is a brilliant presenter with a wicked sense of humour who has always enjoyed a great friendship and rapport with Ant and Dec – I have no doubt she will take to jungle life, if not the critters, really quickly.”
Plans for This Morning during her absence are yet to be announced.
I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here! returns to ITV this autumn.
Ant and Dec have presented the programme in the Australian jungle together since it began in 2002.