Britain’s Got Talent judge Amanda Holden has set tongues wagging after suggesting she’ll leave the show at then end of next year’s series, which would be her tenth on the panel.
“I would love to make it ten and then call it a day. Ten years is an amazing feat,” said Holden. “I want a nice big clock when I leave and some holiday in the sunshine. And a retirement package,” she told Metro, hinting that she could be embarking on a new show of her own.
Decisions on the make-up of the judging panel are made series by series, but if BGT does return Holden-less, would it be the same? The former Wild at Heart actress has been in residence since the beginning, with the rest of the line-up changing around her. Piers Morgan, David Hasselhoff and Michael McIntyre have all buzzed in and buzzed back out, while even Simon Cowell skipped a year of auditions before settling in for the past four series with Holden, David Walliams and Alesha Dixon.
Not to compare her with a big red buzzer or anything, but Holden is, for want of a better phrase, part of the BGT furniture.
She brings something different to the panel too, admitting herself that of all of the judges she strives to back “variety in the true sense of the word”.
“David goes mental, Simon goes pound signs, Alesha goes cool,” she says of the judges’ Golden Buzzer decisions, which let them each send an act through to the semi-finals.
Indeed, Ms H backed finalists and family faves Paddy & Nico last year (yes, the salsa dancing granny) and this series is pretty confident she’s got a great act under her belt, too.
“My choice is going to win, it’s more than one person and they are fantastic,” she told us, keeping, as ever, the exact details a secret until the show’s launch.
As well as having a good eye for talent (and a talent of her own for crying on cue), Holden has helped create a panel where the female judges actually get on – Dixon agrees it’s “girls against the boys” – and she’s not afraid to stand up to Mr Cowell either. In fact, she coolly ignores the ”filth” he whispers to her and the rude notes he tries to distract her with. Over the years she’s even drenched him with water mid-audition – anyone brave enough to do that gets my vote.
And who can forget when Simon Cowell actually kissed her booty? Mild swearing follows…
There’s no sign that Britain’s Got Talent’s going anywhere, though. The format was recognised by Guinness World Records as being the world’s most successful reality show and the UK version is the birthplace of global stars including singer Susan Boyle and dance troupe Diversity, and still draws TV audiences in excess of 9 million.
All with Amanda behind the BGT desk. She’s definitely the kind of talent BGT should hold on to…