'Strictly Come Dancing' confirms Anton Du Beke will join judging panel for new series

Anton Du Beke
Anton Du Beke will join the Strictly Come Dancing judging panel. (Image credit: BBC)

Strictly Come Dancing has revealed that professional dancer Anton Du Beke will cover for Bruno Tonioli again for the new series. Previously, he did a two-week stint as a stand-in judge for the 2020 series of the competition.

The decision has been made due to the ongoing uncertainty regarding international travel restrictions, meaning Bruno Tonioli, who is also a judge on Dancing With The Stars in the USA, will be unable to take part in the series this year.

Confirming the news, Bruno said in a statement: "Whilst I am gutted to not be on the show this year there is one person and one person only that could take my place — it’s just a shame they weren’t available... haha! Darlings I’m kidding, I’m kidding! Seriously though, I have to tell you, Anton IS Mr Strictly and if anybody is filling in for me, it has to be him. I honestly wouldn’t have it any other way and I am so excited to see him waggle his paddle."

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Anton has also spoken about his new judging role, telling fans: "My loves I cannot tell you how thrilled I am to be stepping into Bruno’s brogues for the next series of Strictly. It’s a dream come true to be judging alongside the best of the best and I promise to be kinder to all the couples than any of them have ever been to me."

Prior to his new judging responsibilities, Anton has been a professional dancer on Strictly Come Dancing since the show began in 2004. He's been paired up with stars such as Emma Barton, Patsy Palmer, and Kate Garraway. 

Anton Du Beke will join regular judges Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse, and Shirley Ballas for the new series, with the official release date yet to be confirmed by the BBC.

Anton joining the judging panel isn't the only big change for 2021, as it was confirmed that Janette Manrara would replace Zoe Ball on It Takes Two. The professional dancer said she was stepping down from the competition to take on this new presenting role.

Lucy Buglass
Senior Staff Writer

Lucy joined the WhatToWatch.com team in 2021, where she writes series guides for must-watch programmes, reviews and the latest TV news. Originally from Northumberland, she graduated from Oxford Brookes University with a degree in Film Studies and moved to London to begin a career writing about entertainment.

She is a Rotten Tomatoes approved film critic and has a huge passion for cinema. She especially loves horror, thriller and anything crime-related. Her favourite TV programmes include Inside No 9, American Horror Story, Stranger Things and Black Mirror but she is also partial to a quiz show or a bit of Say Yes to the Dress