GIRLS, prepare to be very excited by the news that Jeremy Piven himself will once again be starring as the eponymous shop owner in ITV’s Mr Selfridge. Jeremy tells me: “It’s now 1919 and the war is over, but as ever a new war is developing on the shop floor.” Will Mr S survive it all? It hits our screens early next year.
Kara Tointon and Hannah Tointon have joined the cast of Mr Selfridge. The real-life sisters will play siblings in the third series of the period drama, which started filming this week. Kara says: “I have such beautiful dresses too, like I wore on Strictly Come Dancing. It really was a more elegant time.”
The Dragons’ Den millionaires only paid out half of the £1million they pledged to entrepreneurs on the BBC show. Insiders, though, tell me: “The true story is that many of the contestants rethink the deals once the cameras stop rolling, and so back out themselves, which is a shame, but they were genuine offers at the time.”
Ricky Wilson has revealed that he is unsure about whether he will return to The Voice UK. Now that Kylie has admitted she is off too, it appears that BBC bosses are still undecided if Kaiser Chief Ricky and co will also be coming back, and will make a firmer offer later in the year – if at all...
Chat show host Alan Carr tells me that of all his guests, comedians Vic and Bob were the rudest. “They were off on the show and kept putting me down, which was a shame but it happens. Would I have them back on the show? Erm, no I don’t think so...” he laughed.
Ex-Westlife stool sitter Brian McFadden has signed up to host a new ITV daytime show, called Who’s Doing the Dishes? It will feature four diners trying to guess which celebrity’s house they’re in, and whose food they’re eating each day for a week. I am sure you’ll agree, it’s looking like an exciting show...
Did you know that people actually apply for jobs in the famous factory that makes ladies undergarments in Coronation Street? A soap source tells me: “We still get quite a few who refuse to believe that they actually can’t have a job alongside Sally and Carla in the factory – but it’s true...”
Pointless star Richard Osman has landed his own BBC quiz show. Osman will host a new daytime series called Two Tribes, which sees seven contestants being split into two teams based on what they have in common.
Lesley Sharp and Suranne Jones will reunite for a fourth series of crime drama Scott and Bailey, ITV has confirmed. Eight new episodes will see the friendship between DCs Janet Scott (Lesley) and Rachel Bailey (Suranne) sorely tested as both seek the same promotion to Detective Sergeant.
EastEnders star Terry Alderton has announced that he is leaving the soap after less than a year as Terry Spraggan. The actor has not had his contract renewed and confirmed that show bosses have chosen to write out his character.
If you enjoyed the fun and frolics of the hit 80s ITV show Duty Free, look out for a new stage show based on the series. Original star Keith Barron tells me: “It was great fun and we all enjoyed it, so it was wonderful to be reunited with the team again. We can promise plenty of laughs in the stage show too.”
The much-hyped Tommy Cooper bio, which was shown recently on ITV1, did not perform well ratings-wise, and many fans were upset at the content of the show, which featured New Tricks actress Amanda Redman. ITV had “high hopes” for the one-off drama and hope to sell it around the world, where Cooper is still a huge comedy name.
Gareth Malone, best known for conducting choirs on TV, tells me he has been approached to ‘star’ in various pantos now he is a celebrity. He says: “I like the idea, really I do, but it’s fitting it in and all that, but who knows, one day I think it just may happen.”
Former Emmerdale actor Karl Davies hasn’t ruled out a possible return to the soap. The actor played Robert Sugden from 2001 to 2005 and briefly returned in 2009 for the funeral of his on-screen father Jack Sugden. “I think it’s possible and a nice idea, but so far no-one on the show has suggested it,” he said. “Maybe after reading your column they will, Ann...”
While the BBC decide what to do with Strictly Come Dancing now that Sir Bruce has vacated that role, it appears that Tess Daly is worried about her position on the show too. She told a friend: “Maybe people think of us as a duo and that it may be better to start afresh with a whole new team.”
Emmerdale’s Jeff Hordley has praised his co-star Eden Taylor-Draper for proving she is not just a child actor any more. “She has grown up – I know that people still see her as Belle Dingle the little girl, however this storyline is really testing her as an actress right now,” he said.
Alan Titchmarsh has insisted he is not bothered by his afternoon chat show getting the axe. “We had a great run and I am happy we are going out on a high, but I know that I will be back doing my garden shows so all that is fine with me in the end,” he revealed.