The Grim Reaper was unveiled as the new 2017 host of I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here today, after impressing producers throughout 2016 during a series of screen tests. Grim will take over from Ant and Dec, bringing with him a series of other changes to the format, with the Bushtucker trials being replaced with a new ‘Death Warmed Up’ challenge.
‘Ant and Dec have had a good run and we thought it was time for Grim to step in’, announced Matt Jones, Executive Producer on ITV. ‘Oh no, I don’t mean it like that, obviously. But Death’s work ethic throughout 2016 can’t be ignored – Terry Wogan, Victoria Wood, Alan Rickman, Paul Daniels, Gene Wilder……Bert Kwouk, for God’s sake. And you have to admit he does have a definite presence when he enters a room.’
Jones admitted that Grim’s deadpan delivery would probably need an overhaul to fit the I’m a Celebrity format. He will also get a presenting partner, with Stephen Mulhern thought to be the current favourite.
The news tops a breakthough year for The Reaper, who has kept audiences entertained whilst guest-presenting on Through the Keyhole, turning up unannounced at celebrities’ houses, with his trademark catchphrase ‘This home is to die for!’
Grim has also impressed as a stalwart presenter on Absolute Radio in 2016, with his Graveyard Shift show taking listeners on a musical journey from the 60s to the present day, inviting them to ‘slip on a comfortable dressing gown whilst another celebrity shuffles off their mortal coil’. George Michael, Carrie Fisher, Rick Parfitt, Leonard Cohen, Prince, Lemmy, and that one from Emerson, Lake, Palmer, have all had the misfortune to appear on his show. ‘He has his own trademark style for sure’, said a colleague. ‘No introductions, no jingles, and cutting artistes off well before they have finished. In many ways. not unlike Ken Bruce. And he has stuck to Absolute’s ‘No Repeat Guarantee’ to the letter.’