NORMALLY at this time in January I would be dusting down my tuxedo to prepare for the annual National Television Awards.
The star-studded ceremony is the highlight of the TV industry’s social calendar, and the event’s afterparty has thrown up no end of mischief over the years.
So it is with a heavy heart that I can reveal the bash at London’s O2 has been pushed back yet again, from its already revised date of April 20.
It will now take place on September 8, organisers tell me, after it became clear a full-scale event would be unworkable in the current climate.
Organisers will be pulling out all the stops for an extra-special show, though.
NTAs executive producer Kim Turberville said: “The awards will return to The O2 London in September to mark the UK’s best, boldest and most beloved TV shows with a surprise-packed event.
"And we look forward to seeing you on the night for a celebration like no other.”
Insiders tell me they expect this year’s do to be the biggest and best since the awards started in 1995.
A source said: “When the organisers had to make a decision about whether or not the NTAs could go ahead, they knew immediately they didn’t want to do anything remote.
“The NTAs are the glitziest night in the telly calendar so to have any less sparkle or glamour just wouldn’t be right.
"Now, after the delays, the organisers are planning on putting on a huge show.
“There will be surprise guest performances and new categories, and more stars than ever present.”
Fans who have bought tickets to this year’s ceremony will be able to use them on the new date, and anyone else keen to attend can get theirs at nationaltvawards.com.
It will be worth the wait.
Sher drags her heels
HIGH heels and skin-tight trousers are not everyone’s idea of maternity wear.
But that’s what pregnant Sheridan Smith squeezed into when she was a judge on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK.
Tomorrow’s episode of the BBC Three show sees the actress and her baby bump join RuPaul, Michelle Visage and the show’s other special guest, Alan Carr.
Since filming last year, Sheridan has had son Billy.
I’m just surprised she could get those trousers off.
Love never dies
CORRIE’s Beverley Callard paid tribute to co-star Anne Kirkbride on the sixth anniversary of her death.
The actress, who played Deirdre in the soap for 42 years, died aged 60 after a battle with cancer.
Beverley said: “Six years ago I lost my darling friend. Miss her every single day, love never dies.”
The Kemps are back on their Best
I CAN reveal Martin and Roman Kemp will be returning to present a second series of Sunday Best.
The father and son team were a hit last year when they launched the ITV celebrity chat and music show over 22 episodes in the summer.
Now bosses at the channel are finalising their deal.
An insider said: “Martin and Roman’s Sunday Best fared really well after its debut last June and both are on board to make it happen again.
“The format means it can be produced and done in a Covid-19 safe environment, which makes it even more ideal. The first series was done with social distancing and it worked really well, so there are few concerns.”
I’m all for getting as much new telly as soon as possible, so this is great news.
And I’ve no doubt Martin and Roman’s fans will be thrilled to have them back.
Lupin to overtake Bridgerton
NETFLIX series Lupin, inspired by the French story about a gentleman thief and master of disguise, will overtake The Queen’s Gambit and Bridgerton ratings.
Around 70million households are projected to stream the show in its first 28 days.
It has also become the first French series to land on Netflix’s Top Ten.
Adjani is Dreaming of Baftas
A BBC comedy series about racism in the British film industry will arrive this year.
Dreaming Whilst Black is an adaptation of the 2018 YouTube series of the same name, and will star Adjani Salmon as a struggling filmmaker in London.
Adjani, who wrote and starred in the original, is expecting big things.
"He said: “I’m putting it out there – Dreaming Whilst Black will win Baftas! Three!”
It is understood talks have been held with Netflix on transferring the sitcom to the streaming giant if it proves to be a Beeb hit.
A pilot has been commissioned.
While BBC Three appears its likeliest home, a channel is yet to be confirmed.
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