Bruce Forsyth leaves Strictly Come Dancing
The dance floor king will still be back for one-off specials of the show
Sir Bruce Forsyth is to step down from presenting Strictly Come Dancing after a decade fronting the hit BBC1 Saturday night show.
Sir Bruce, 86, said that he was not retiring and would continue to present the Strictly Christmas Special as well as other spin-offs from the series.
The showbusiness veteran, who was knighted in 2011, missed a number of shows last series due to illness.
He quit the results show in 2010 and was replaced by Claudia Winkleman, who may be given a more prominent role when the series returns this Autumn.
Sir Bruce said: “After 10 wonderful years and 11 series, I believe it is now the right time to step down from the rigours of presenting the Strictly live shows.
“I am very proud of what the show has achieved and confident it will entertain the nation for many years to come. I am also delighted that by presenting the Christmas and Children in Need shows I will continue to have a strong association with Strictly.
“In addition, I am looking forward to the specials planned with the BBC as well as some live theatre shows, so before anyone asks... I am not retiring quite yet!”
No Strictly replacement was named for Sir Bruce. His departure gives the BBC an opportunity to refresh the show as it faces a renewed ratings challenge from The X Factor, which has restored Simon Cowell and Cheryl Cole to its judging line-up.
Candidates to take over the Strictly role could include Graham Norton, Rufus Hound, Vernon Kay, husband of co-host Tess Daly, or even former Come Dancing host Sir Terry Wogan if the BBC wishes to pair Daly with another old-hand.
Mark Linsey, controller of entertainment commissioning, said: “One of the joys of my job is working with Sir Bruce Forsyth and long may that continue.
“He is the all-time master and commander when it comes to Great British entertainers and Strictly owes him such a great deal. This is not a farewell, but you can’t blame him for wanting to take things a little bit easier.”
Charlotte Moore, controller of BBC One, said: “Sir Bruce Forsyth is one of the great showbiz legends of our time and Strictly’s success is due in vast amounts to him. I am so pleased he will continue to be part of the Strictly family and promise viewers that we haven't seen the last of him on BBC One.”
The announcement that Sir Bruce is stepping down comes a week after he gave a long and occasionally rambling acceptance speech at the Broadcasting Press Guild awards in front of senior BBC executives.
TV review Nick Hewer, the man whose eyebrows speak a thousand words, is set to leave The Apprentice
Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites
TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Peter Lik: The self-proclaimed 'fine-art photographer' whose work sells for millions
The best underrated Christmas movies from Love, Actually to While You Were Sleeping
Grace Dent on TV: The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies was a beautifully shot, immensely considered drama
The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies, review: Jason Watkins is brilliant, but real victim Joanna Yeates is reduced to a footnote
Marilyn Manson denies involvement in shocking Lana Del Rey rape video
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre