Graham Norton ‘rejected’ opportunity to join Britain’s Got Talent judging panel following David Walliams controversy

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Graham Norton was reportedly offered the chance to join BGT (Picture: WireImage)

Graham Norton was reportedly in talks to replace David Walliams on the upcoming season of Britain’s Got Talent.

The Little Britain comedian, 50, has been part of the BGT family for several years, alongside Simon Cowell, Alesha Dixon, and Amanda Holden.

However, in November 2022, Walliams was embroiled in controversy after disrespectful comments he made about auditionees came to light.

According to a transcript shared by the Guardian, the children’s author also said of a female hopeful: ‘She’s like the slightly boring girl you meet in the pub that thinks you want to f**k them but you don’t.’

His slurs were picked up by a microphone used to record chats between him and his fellow judges in January 2020.

Following the scandal, Walliams’ position on the show was ‘up in the air’ with reports suggesting the judge has quit, and according to reports, bosses set their sights on presenter Norton, 59, as his replacement.

David’s future on the talent show is uncertain (Picture: ITV)

Graham reportedly turned down the gig (Picture PA)

‘Bosses had their hearts set on Graham,’ a TV insider told The Sun.

‘Money was not the issue but, after some thought, Graham realised it was not a

Following Walliams’ controversial comments, a spokesperson for BGT told at the time that ‘the judging panel for Britain’s Got Talent 2023 will be announced in due course.’

‘It’s still very much up in the air at the moment on whether David is going to take part in next year’s show. No decision, though, has been made as yet,’ they added.

It’s been speculated that David quit the series (Picture: ITV)

Despite the backlash, co-star and long-serving judge Holden backed Walliams to return, vocalising her support as she chatted to Good Morning Britain at the Variety Club Show Business Awards last year.

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Asked how she wants the panel to look next year, she replied: ‘I would like to see the judging panel look like it did before. I think we’re a great team, we’re a family,’ she said.

When quizzed directly on if she was ‘Team David’, she quickly replied: ‘Of course, I’m team David.’ has reached out to Graham Norton’s reps and ITV for comment.

Britain’s Got Talent returns to ITV later this year.

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