NewsColony
Image default
News

Strictly Come Dancing ‘hope to land Chris Whitty for 2021 series’

Strictly Come Dancing is reportedly hoping to a land a ‘star of the pandemic’ for the 2021 series with Professor Chris Whitty at the top of the list.

The hit BBC One dance show is said to be making ‘discreet enquiries’ over the next few weeks in a bid to secure England’s Chief Medical Officer Whitty, 54, his deputy Jonathan Van-Tam, or vaccine tsar Kate Bingham.   

It is reported that Health Secretary Matt Hancock was also lined-up as a possible contestant but his ‘hectic schedule’ ruled him out from taking part. 

Strictly 2021? Strictly Come Dancing is reportedly hoping to a land a 'star of the pandemic' for the 2021 series with Professor Chris Whitty, pictured, at the top of the list

Strictly 2021? Strictly Come Dancing is reportedly hoping to a land a 'star of the pandemic' for the 2021 series with Professor Chris Whitty, pictured, at the top of the list

Strictly 2021? Strictly Come Dancing is reportedly hoping to a land a ‘star of the pandemic’ for the 2021 series with Professor Chris Whitty, pictured, at the top of the list  

Line-up? Whitty's deputy Jonathan Van-Tam, pictured, and vaccine tsar Kate Bingham are also reportedly being lined-up for the 2021 series

Line-up? Whitty's deputy Jonathan Van-Tam, pictured, and vaccine tsar Kate Bingham are also reportedly being lined-up for the 2021 series

Pictured: Vaccine tsar Kate Bingham pictured

Pictured: Vaccine tsar Kate Bingham pictured

Line-up? Whitty’s deputy Jonathan Van-Tam and vaccine tsar Kate Bingham (L-R) are also reportedly being lined-up for the 2021 series 

A collection of politicians have taken part in previous series including Ann Widdecombe in 2010, Ed Balls in 2016 and Jacqui Smith in 2020. 

A source told The Sun: ‘Eighteen months ago Chris Whitty, Jonathan Van-Tam and Kate Bingham were utter unknowns. Today they’re practically household names. 

‘After all the doom and gloom of Covid, it would be brilliant viewing to get one of these three out of their suits and into some sparkles. Chris is top of the list, and discreet enquiries will be made over the next few weeks.’

They added: ‘Obviously it’s all dependent on where we are on the R rate, but landing a star of the pandemic is the goal. Unfortunately it’s been made clear Matt Hancock’s hectic schedule won’t allow for a weekly waltz — so he’s been ruled out.’

Exciting: The hit BBC One dance show is said to be making 'discreet enquiries' over the next few weeks in a bid to secure England's Chief Medical Officer Whitty, 54 (2020 winners Oti Mabuse and Bill Bailey pictured)

Exciting: The hit BBC One dance show is said to be making 'discreet enquiries' over the next few weeks in a bid to secure England's Chief Medical Officer Whitty, 54 (2020 winners Oti Mabuse and Bill Bailey pictured)

Exciting: The hit BBC One dance show is said to be making ‘discreet enquiries’ over the next few weeks in a bid to secure England’s Chief Medical Officer Whitty, 54 (2020 winners Oti Mabuse and Bill Bailey pictured) 

MailOnline has contacted Strictly Come Dancing for comment.  

Whitty has become a household name in Britain over the past year, regularly appearing at Downing Street briefings to issue updates on the pandemic.

The professor has developed something of a fan following among the public for his straight-talking, trustworthy and unflappable nature at the press conferences.

Earlier this year, a range of merchandise was released in appreciation of England’s Chief Medical Officer – from mugs to T-shirts, birthday cards and cardboard masks.

Reports: It is reported that Health Secretary Matt Hancock was also lined-up as a possible contestant but his 'hectic schedule' ruled him out from taking part

Reports: It is reported that Health Secretary Matt Hancock was also lined-up as a possible contestant but his 'hectic schedule' ruled him out from taking part

Reports: It is reported that Health Secretary Matt Hancock was also lined-up as a possible contestant but his ‘hectic schedule’ ruled him out from taking part 

Politicians: A collection of politicians have taken part in previous series including Ann Widdecombe in 2010, Ed Balls in 2016 and Jacqui Smith, pictured, in 2020

Politicians: A collection of politicians have taken part in previous series including Ann Widdecombe in 2010, Ed Balls in 2016 and Jacqui Smith, pictured, in 2020

Politicians: A collection of politicians have taken part in previous series including Ann Widdecombe in 2010, Ed Balls in 2016 and Jacqui Smith, pictured, in 2020 

Among them was a £10 mug referencing Dub Be Good to Me, saying: ‘Hands, face, space, walk jam nitty-gritty; You’re listening to advice from Professor Chris Whitty.’

There were birthday cards with his face on, with one stating: ‘The science is saying that you are one year older’ – and another: ‘If you’ve planned anything, unplan it.’

And there is a range of T-shirts and mugs with the phrase ‘next slide please’ in reference to him asking for a following graphic during the press conferences.

Deputy chief medical officer Van-Tam, who also regularly appears at the press conferences, has inspired his own range of products from T-shirts to mugs.

Household name: Whitty has become a household name in Britain over the past year, regularly appearing at Downing Street briefings to issue updates on the pandemic

Household name: Whitty has become a household name in Britain over the past year, regularly appearing at Downing Street briefings to issue updates on the pandemic

Household name: Whitty has become a household name in Britain over the past year, regularly appearing at Downing Street briefings to issue updates on the pandemic (pictured in July) 

Number 10’s ‘favourite’ health chief: Who is Jonathan Van Tam?

Professor Van Tam – dubbed JVT – received cult status throughout his appearances flanking ministers at Downing Street press briefings. 

He took on the role of deputy chief medical officer for England in 2017 and leads on health protection. 

He won several accolades for his forthright and colourful communications style and has accumulated a hoard of loyal fans who fawn over his use of elaborate extended metaphors. 

These included likening the production of the Covid vaccine to a train.

When the Pfizer vaccine was approved, he triumphantly announced: ‘The train has now slowed down safely, it is at the station.’

He steamed ahead with the drawn-out analogy, announcing that the train would be stopping all over the country and urging people to ‘get on’.

He said there would be ‘several more trains’ coming down the tracks – believed to be a coded signal that not everyone would receive a jab in the first phase of the rollout.

When explaining the logistical difficulties of storing the Pfizer vaccine, he used a bizarre yoghurt pot analogy.

‘It is not a yoghurt that can be taken out of the fridge and put back multiple times,’ he said, before later trending on Twitter.

Prof Van Tam – whose mother called him ‘Johnny’ – has previously appealed for Britons not to ‘tear the pants out of’ a looser lockdown, and likened the cutting-edge scientific quest for treatments to a football penalty shoot out.

<!—->

Advertisement

Among them is an £8.95 mug saying ‘J.V. Tea’ and a £33.99 hoodie with his face on, saying ‘The Prof. Jonathan Van-Tam Appreciation Society’. 

The deputy chief medical officer has provided a rare ray of sunshine during this Covid crisis with his offbeat analogies. 

Professor Van Tam – dubbed JVT – received cult status throughout his appearances flanking ministers at Downing Street press briefings.

He won several accolades for his forthright and colourful communications style and accumulated a hoard of loyal fans who fawn over his use of elaborate extended metaphors.

In May, he appealed for Britons not to ‘tear the pants out of’ a more-relaxed lockdown and urged them to be sensible to avoid a spike in infections.

He also likened the Covid vaccine to a train stopping all over the country and urging people to ‘get on’.

When explaining the logistical difficulties of storing the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, he said it is ‘not a yoghurt that can be taken out of the fridge and put back multiple times’.

In February, responding to rumours that he was set to appear on Strictly, he told ITV News: ‘I think it would be rather like watching Jumbo on ice. 

‘But I don’t want to spoil the bookmakers’ books, so I’ll say no more than that.’ 

Strictly professional dancer Janette Manrara backed calls for him to appear on the show, telling Jeremy Vine on Channel 5: ‘I feel like he could be really good in ballroom because he’s quite elegant.’

It comes after it was reported that the BBC is planning for the 2021 series to resume its full 13-show run this autumn after the 2020 show was reduced to just nine weeks due to Covid restrictions. 

It was also claimed that the much-anticipated Blackpool special will be back this year, after travel restrictions meant a trip to the seaside town last year was impossible.

A source recently told The Sun: ‘They’re going to put on a full series this year. That means 13 episodes will and all of the themed weeks. The pinnacle will be the trip to Blackpool and that’s always been the way on Strictly.

‘As things stand, the whole show will head to the North West in November. Everyone is really excited.’ 

Strictly’s eighteenth series faced major setbacks and was forced to go ahead with strict social distancing protocols in place.

This meant the annual Blackpool trip was scrapped, and the competition only ran for nine episodes.

However, the BBC succeeded in keeping the show on air despite a handful of COVID-19 outbreaks with Katya Jones testing positive and leaving the show early with her celebrity partner Nicola Adams.

Popstar HRVY, 22, also tested positive before the show aired, however was able to recover in time to take part.

Here come the girls! Making up the female pros are Amy Dowden, Oti Mabuse, Luba Mushtuk, Nadiya Bychkova, Dianne Buswell, Janette Manrara, Karen Hauer, Katya Jones and Nancy Xu  (pictured L-R in 2020)

Here come the girls! Making up the female pros are Amy Dowden, Oti Mabuse, Luba Mushtuk, Nadiya Bychkova, Dianne Buswell, Janette Manrara, Karen Hauer, Katya Jones and Nancy Xu  (pictured L-R in 2020)

Here come the girls! Making up the female pros are Amy Dowden, Oti Mabuse, Luba Mushtuk, Nadiya Bychkova, Dianne Buswell, Janette Manrara, Karen Hauer, Katya Jones and Nancy Xu  (pictured L-R in 2020) 

Last month the BBC confirmed the 16 professional dancers who will hit the dance floor this Autumn, with fan favourites such as Anton Du Beke, Johannes Radebe and Dianne Buswell all back.

Anton, 54, is to continue his reign as Strictly Come Dancing’s longest-serving professional dancer by marking his 19th season on the show.

Making up the female pros are Oti Mabuse, Janette Manrara, Amy Dowden, Dianne Buswell, Karen Hauer, Katya Jones, Luba Mushtuk, Nadiya Bychkova and Nancy Xu.

While Aljaž Škorjanec, Anton Du Beke, Giovanni Pernice, Gorka Marquez, Graziano Di Prima, Johannes Radebe and Neil Jones make up the male pros.

Pros: Anton Du Beke, Gorka Marquez, Graziano Di Prima, Neil Jones, Aljaž Škorjanec, Giovanni Pernice and Johannes Radebe make up the male pros (pictured L-R in 2020)

Pros: Anton Du Beke, Gorka Marquez, Graziano Di Prima, Neil Jones, Aljaž Škorjanec, Giovanni Pernice and Johannes Radebe make up the male pros (pictured L-R in 2020)

Pros: Anton Du Beke, Gorka Marquez, Graziano Di Prima, Neil Jones, Aljaž Škorjanec, Giovanni Pernice and Johannes Radebe make up the male pros (pictured L-R in 2020) 

Source: Daily Mail |World News

Related posts

Know someone who loves wine? These are the gifts for them

NewsColony

The Crown producers are struggling to find an actor to play Prince Andrew

NewsColony

Congress drops $500 million for states to bolster election security from final spending package

NewsColony

Leave a Comment