For those worrying that The Voice will be stripped of everything but the spinning chairs when it moves to ITV, fear not: RadioTimes.com understands that the commercial broadcaster is not going to be heavy handed with changes.
“That show’s been bought because it’s that show. Why change it?” a source close to ITV told us of the series, which currently has Ricky Wilson, Paloma Faith, Boy George and will.i.am on the coaching panel.
ITV apparently doesn’t want to take the show on, rebrand it, and come under fire for making it The X Factor part two. Especially if the changes proved unpopular.
“Ultimately, it’s not the X Factor, it’s a different show,” the source added.
And it looks like the coaching panel could well stay the same, too. While there’s been no official confirmation, the nods and winks have been in the right places to suggest that will.i.am is already in talks with ITV about moving with the show. It makes sense, he’s in many ways shaped the whole tone of The Voice.
There’s also been plenty of talk of Ricky Wilson doing a U-turn on his decision to leave. Speaking to him at last night’s secret The Voice gig – which saw the finalists perform in an intimate London club – Wilson said he’s no longer written off the idea of returning. “I do love doing the show,” he said.
Indeed a friend close to the Kaiser Chiefs singer said he doesn’t think Wilson realises how much he’d miss it if he did go. He added that the rumoured frostiness with will.i.am is all just playing up for the cameras and that the coaches get on well enough to rib each other in the name of entertainment.
Ricky’s friend also said that while Wilson is yet to be involved in any direct conversations with ITV, he believes it’s a meeting the singer would want to have.
A source added of the current four-strong line-up: “I think it’s safe to say they’ll all be considered.”
As early open mic auditions get under way for what will be the sixth series, an ITV spokesperson said of the panel: “No decisions have been made on coaches for The Voice 2017.”