Keith Lemon almost quit Celebrity Juice when Fearne Cotton stepped down (Picture: ITV)Keith Lemon almost quit Celebrity Juice after Fearne Cotton threw in the towel after 10 years last December.
The 45-year-old comic revealed he and team captains Fearne and This Morning’s Holly Willoughby had a pact for them all to walk away from the show together, but he went back on the deal after realising he loves hosting the programme too much to step down.
‘Initially I said, “That’s it, I’m leaving too.” It’s been 10 years and Holly, Fearne and I don’t see each other all the time, but we’re a close group of mates,’ Keith, who’s real name is Leigh Francis, admitted.
‘Ages ago we said to each other if one goes, we all go. After I found out Fearne was leaving, I went to bed and slept on it and woke up the next day thinking that I can’t leave the show because I still enjoy it so much.’
Fearne quit Celebrity Juice after 10 years on the show (Picture: ITV2)The presenter was glad to hear that Holly had decided to stay with Celebrity Juice too, adding: ‘I thought, “If Holly leaves because Fearne is then that really is the end, I’m not doing it without them both.”
‘But then I spoke to Holly and the first thing she said was, “Who are we going to get then?” I said: “So you’re still up for it then?” and she said, “Of course!” She did say she thought she would be the first to leave though. I thought so, too.
Top Gear host Paddy McGuinness, who’s a regular guest on the show, will be taking over from Fearne when the show returns later this year.
‘I was a guest on the first ever episode and I’ve done every series since so I’ve always felt like part of the Juice family,’ Paddy said at the time.
‘Keith’s one of my best mates, I love Holly and we all have a natural rapport. I’m looking forward to the chaos!’
More: Fearne Cotton
Loose Women’s Stacey Solomon has also been booked for the series as a regular, adding: ‘I’m so bloomin’ excited to be joining the Juice family. I have loved the show since it began and always enjoyed being a guest so to get to be part of the furniture is a dream come true.
‘So here goes nothing. Wahoo!’
Celebrity Juice is expected to return to ITV2 later this year.
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