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Strictly ‘U-turn’ as Craig desperate for Bruno to return to ‘flat’ judging panel

Craig Revel Horwood is said to be desperate to reintegrate ageing dance expert Bruno Tonioli back into the Strictly judging panel – as he feels the series is ‘flat’ without him

Strictly Come Dancing bosses will be forced to perform a giant u-turn and re-hire Bruno Tonioli to rejoin the judging panel in order to reignite excitement in the show – if Craig Revel Horwood gets his way.

Fans of Strictly have been deprived of 65-year-old Bruno’s expert opinions – and cutting remarks – on the Strictly judging panel for the past two years.

The Italian star traditionally judges on both the BBC ’s Strictly and America’s Dancing With The Stars equivalent at the same time – jetting between both shows while they air simultaneously on either side of the Atlantic.

But the Covid pandemic forced Bruno to make a decision about appearing on just one show last year – and Strictly’s loss was Dancing With The Stars’ gain as the dance expert picked the USA over the UK.

Bruno Tonilio was replaced as a judge on Strictly for the 2021 series


ABC via Getty Images)

While Bruno appeared via video link each week during the 2020 season, he has been absent for the 2021 show – and was officially replaced by 55-year-old professional dancer Anton Du Beke who joined the panel.

But original judge Craig, 56, is said to be desperately missing Bruno – and all the chaos that they would bring to Strictly together.

A source close to the show claimed to The Sun on Sunday: “Craig feels the chemistry is a bit flat without Bruno. He brought some pizzazz and expertise to the panel.

Craig Revel Horwood reportedly want’s Bruno back as he feels the judging panel is ‘flat’ without him



“Craig would love for his pal to return next year and thinks it’s possible now that the world is opening up.

“They have a spark that is difficult to recreate. But Anton has a strong fan base and there is definitely a camp who would like him to stay.”

Viewers might disagree with Craig’s opinion, however, as many have been heaping praise on replacement Anton for his balanced and insightful critiques.

One viewer previously questioned via Twitter : “Is it time yet to say that Bruno can stay in the US and Anton should stay as the FAR BETTER judge?? #strictly.”

Another praised Bruno’s replacement, tweeting: “#Strictly Anton makes such sensible comments, so much better than Bruno. Please, please keep Anton on the judging panel.”

And a further fan gushed: “PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE @bbcstrictly #Strictly keep the brilliant @TheAntonDuBeke #antondubeke as a permanent judge on the show.The panel is so much better with him there. He is a calming influence. So many of us fans really want Anton to stay as a judge. He’s a #legend.”

The 2021 judging panel – consisting of Craig, Motsi Mabuse, Shirley Ballas and Anton Du Beke – has been a hit with viewers



Last month, it was reported that Anton has agreed to step back onto the dance floor as a pro dancer next year if Bruno returns to the series.

Meanwhile, fans have been surprised to learn that Bruno won’t be a part of the 2021 Christmas special.

The show is due to be filmed on December 7 and will air on Christmas Day, but reports have suggested the star will not be flying back to the USA to take part.

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