Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield claim big stars not needed on reality TV

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Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield attending the press launch for the upcoming series of Dancing On Ice at the Natural History Museum in Kensington, London. Picture date: Tuesday December 18, 2018. (David Parry/PA Wire)

Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield have said that there is no need for star-studded line-ups on reality TV shows.

The presenting pair said Strictly Come Dancing and I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here have not suffered despite criticism that their line-ups are not filled with household names.

They argued that it is the story the contestants create and not who they are at the outset of the show which is compelling to viewers.

Willoughby and Schofield are set to return to presenting duties for Dancing One Ice, and they have hailed the show’s line-up as “fantastic”. 

But the duo claims that the initial fame of contestants soon fades when people fall in love with the stars on screen.

Schofield said: “How many times has it happened that you’re watching I’m A Celeb and you’re thinking ‘I’m not sure about this’, then it turns into the best series.

“The story is fantastic, and what happens in there is brilliant.  It’s the same with Strictly, it’s the same with Dancing On Ice. You’re don’t know who’s going to bubble to the top, you don’t know who everyone’s going to fall in love with.”

Dancing On Ice, set to air in early 2019, includes Gemma Collins, Brian McFadden, and Richard Blackwood in the line-up. The show’s presenters have said the roster of stars is superb, but defended reality programmes that allegedly lack big stars.

Willoughby said: “The thing is with the line-up, our line-up happens to be brilliant.

“But it doesn’t really matter, because you’re watching a person, for want of a better word, go on a journey. You’re with that person from day one, you’re watching how they change, you’re watching them learn the highs the lows,

“It doesn’t really matter. But, as it happens, we really do have a great line-up.”

Dancing On Ice is due to air on ITV in early 2019.