Britain’s Got Talent bosses have responded to claims that the first day of auditions got off to a bit of a bumpy start this year.
According to an anonymous source quoted in the tabloid, the pair were “deeply upset” over reports in the press that newcomer Bruno was being paid more than them.
The Sun claimed the two had taken “a principled stand for women”, adding that they’ve now received pay rises to “bring them in line with” what David was previously being paid.
In response to these reports, a BGT spokesperson told HuffPost UK: “Simon, Amanda, Alesha and Ant and Dec were delighted to welcome Bruno to the Britain’s Got Talent family yesterday for the first day of auditions for 2023.
“The opening day’s contestants featured some fantastic auditions and the rapport between the judges – including newcomer Bruno – was fun and immediate. This bodes well for a very successful new series.”
“It’s my first show, I have no idea what’s going to happen, but I’m sure it’s going to be brilliant.”
David Walliams’ future on the BGT panel has looked uncertain since last year, when recordings of him making explicit and disparaging remarks about some auditionees on the set of the show were shared in the media.
In a transcript shared with The Guardian, the comedian and children’s author allegedly branded one elderly hopeful a “c***” three times after they made a jibe about him in an unsuccessful audition.
Of another female contestant, David reportedly remarked: “She’s like the slightly boring girl you meet in the pub that thinks you want to fuck them, but you don’t.”
According to the newspaper, he then continued: “It’s the last thing on your mind, but she’s like: ‘Yep, I bet you do!’ ‘No I don’t!’ I had a bit of a boner, but now it’s going, it’s now shrivelled up inside my body.”
After the comments were made public, David issued a statement, saying: “I would like to apologise to the people I made disrespectful comments about during breaks in filming for Britain’s Got Talent in 2020.
“These were private conversations and – like most conversations with friends – were never intended to be shared. Nevertheless, I am sorry.”