ITV presenter Phillip Schofield has been dropped by his agents at YMU Group.
The agency confirmed to Variety on Friday that it has “parted company” with Schofield, who last week stepped away from his hosting duties on ITV’s “This Morning” after 21 years on air. The presenter’s exit followed ongoing rumors of a rift with co-host Holly Willoughby that were linked to his younger brother’s trial for sexual assault.
Timothy Schofield was found guilty of 11 charges related to sexually assaulting a child between 2016 and 2019, and was last week jailed for 12 years. During the trial, the court heard that Timothy Schofield had confessed his crimes to his older brother two months before criminal proceedings started, to which the presenter had replied: “I don’t want you to tell me any more…You’ve got to stop, just never do it again. Regardless how that happened, it must never happen again.”
Tabloid reports suggested that Willoughby was upset that Schofield had not discussed the matter with her, though she hasn’t directly addressed their backstage problems. The alleged falling-out between the pair came as a shock to fans given their close bond outside of work. Willoughby also supported Schofield when he came out as gay on the show in February 2020, writing on Instagram, “Never been more proud of my friend than I am today.”
In its statement, YMU suggested that it had recently learned “new information” about Schofield that led them to sever ties with their long-term client. The agency did not provide further detail.
Mary Bekhait, Group CEO of YMU Group, said: “Honesty and integrity are core values for YMU’s whole business, defining everything we do. Talent management is a relationship based entirely on trust.
“This week, we have learned important new information about our client Phillip Schofield. These facts contradicted what Phillip had previously told YMU, as well as the external advisors we had brought in to support him. As a result, on Thursday we agreed to part company with Phillip, with immediate effect.”
In a statement shared with Variety via his legal representatives, Schofield said: “It is with the most profound regret that after 35 years of being faultlessly managed by YMU I have agreed to step down from their representation with immediate effect.”
Schofield has been replaced on “This Morning” by Dermot O’Leary and Alison Hammond. Willoughby will remain on the program, though she’s taking a short break until returning in early June.
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