Almost 11 million viewers tuned in to the first episode of I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! 2018 on Sunday night as Holly Willoughby joined Declan Donnelly for the 18th series of ITV’s jungle adventures.
The show’s audience peaked with 11.6 million viewers watching the 10 new celebrities (including former Doctor Who star John Barrowman) settle into camp life, according to overnight viewing figures.
The launch made I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! the most watched television programme of the year so far, beaten only by matches during the 2018 World Cup.
It is also the biggest audience I’m a Celebrity has received for an opening episode in the last five years. The 2013 series, won by Westlife singer Kian Egan but made popular thanks to the antics of Joey Essex, saw 13 million viewers tune in to the first episode.
The pair couldn’t resist making a cheeky joke about McPartlin’s absence, with Donnelly telling viewers at home, “”The more eagle-eyed viewers among you will have already noticed a big change to the show.
“Yes, one of the most gorgeous presenters on British television has been joined by Holly Willoughby.”
I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! continues tonight at 9pm on ITV