I’m A Celebrity to film secret show in South Africa – with series kept off air for MONTHS

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I’m A Celeb bosses are preparing for the possibility that filming the live series in Australia could fall through due to Covid restrictions

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I’m A Celeb: Ant & Dec say they hope they will return to the jungle

A new I’m A Celebrity series is set to be filmed in South Africa, with the results kept quiet until it’s broadcast.

ITV bosses are planning to pre-record the hit show at a sunny location, after having to film in a castle in North Wales during the Covid pandemic.

Hosts Ant and Dec are on board for the slightly shorter two-week run, set to be pre-recorded in July.

It will either be shown in November, if plans for filming the live series in Australia fall through due to Covid restrictions, or kept on ice to be broadcast early next year.







A NEW I’m A Celebrity series is set to be filmed in South Africa, with the results kept quiet until it’s broadcast
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Image:

James Gourley / ITV / REX / Shutterstock)

An insider explained: “This is a brilliant reserve plan in case Covid restrictions come round again in the Autumn and the cast and crew can’t get Down Under, as has happened for the past two years.

“There is no appetite to go back to Wales. It was great while it lasted but it’s just too dark and damp. Everyone’s had enough, including the viewers.







I’m A Celeb bosses are preparing for the possibility that filming the live series in Australia could fall through
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Image:

ITV / REX / Shutterstock)

“We need sun and new challenges. If we can get back to Australia – fantastic. Then South Africa would air early next year.

“Aussie authorities are pretty tough when it comes to Covid lockdowns and restrictions. If we can’t go, we’ll have this one ready for autumn, to air ahead of the World Cup. It’s a solid plan B, a win-win. ”

The show should get the official go-ahead within days and bookers will then set about signing up celebrities.

The 2020 and 2021 series were staged in spooky Gwrych Castle in Abergele.

The first outing, shown during lockdown, drew an audience of 8.4 million but by last year this shrunk by about 3 million.

The final attracted 7.1 million viewers – 5 million fewer than the previous year.

Producers on the franchise, launched in 2002, are working on ways to stage I’m a Celeb without a live audience voting for Bushtucker Trials, evictions and the winner. The source added: “There are some interesting ideas.”







The 2020 and 2021 series were staged in spooky Gwrych Castle in Abergele
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Image:

ITV / REX / Shutterstock)

The South African location is likely to be Kruger National Park, which has hosted the French, Danish, German, Hungarian and Romanian shows.

Another possibility is the northern Limpopo province, where the Russian show is set. ITV chief exec Dame Carolyn McCall has made it clear the show won’t be in Wales this year. She said last month: “This show is meant to be in Australia.”

I’m A Celebrity 2022 is set to launch later this year on ITV and ITV Hub.

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