Dancing On Ice host Phillip Schofield has described the show as ‘incredibly dangerous’ but stressed it has ‘contingency plans for everything’ ahead of its return.
The ITV celebrity skating show will be back on TV screens in January with a star-studded line-up, including Coronation Street actress Sally Dynevor, Love Island’s Liberty Poole and Happy Mondays dancer Bez.
The last series, which was won by Capital FM presenter Sonny Jay, took place amid the pandemic and saw a number of celebrities withdraw after being injured or testing positive.
Speaking during an online panel, Schofield described the series as ‘fun but scary’.
He continued: ‘You never want to see anybody hurt but we have had people hurt.
‘I think it is incredibly dangerous. Ice skates are very sharp and so we have had nasty cuts, we have had big falls. And a fall is always great fun so long as nobody hurts themselves. That’s the bottom line.’
‘We have contingency plans for everything, whether you cut to us, whether you go to a break, whether we just all go home,’ he added.
Musing on last year’s series, the presenter acknowledged it had been ‘really tough’, with injuries and with Covid.
‘The one thing when you start a series like this all those years ago, is the fact that actually you are going to have to come off. We will have to come off and recover because you can’t do the show. That’s a shocker.’
Series 13 holds the record for the most withdrawals in the show’s history, with Denise Van Outen, Jason Donovan and The Only Way is Essex star Billie Shepherd all exiting the competition after sustaining injures, while actor and comedian Rufus Hound and Emmerdale’s Joe-Warren Plant were forced to go after testing positive for Covid-19.
Schofield, who hosts alongside Holly Willoughby, said he had been banned from the rink by show bosses because he lacked the correct insurance.
He revealed: ‘When we first started, I borrowed some skates, went out on the ice, I think Chris (Dean) might have taken me round a bit, Matt Evers took me round.
‘I thought, “I am going to learn how to skate here, how perfect.”’
However, that was not how things panned out, with the This Morning star sharing that after his turn about the rink ‘there were about five suits standing on the judging lectern and I thought, “That doesn’t look very good.”’
He was then told in strict terms that he was not to skate, but the 59-year-old persisted, arguing ‘it’s nobody’s fault if I fall over and hurt myself’ and that if he broke a leg it was ‘not a problem’.
He admitted: ‘So the next week I went out again and got into proper, proper trouble. So that was the end of my skating. I was not allowed on the ice.’
Strictly Come Dancing professional Oti Mabuse will replace John Barrowman on the judging panel this series, alongside Ashley Banjo, Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean.
Barrowman has said his departure was unrelated to the accusations that he repeatedly exposed himself on the set of Doctor Who and its sister show Torchwood.
The actor, who starred as Captain Jack Harkness, said his exit was prompted by him taking on a role on All Star Musicals, another ITV series.
Guiding the celebrity novices through their routines will be professionals including reigning champion Angela Egan, who lifted the trophy with Jay last series, and Matt Evers, who has been a part of show since its launch in 2006.
Dancing On Ice will start on ITV in January.
Credit: Original article published here.