Alan Carr took a cheeky swipe at Phillip Schofield while filming his Christmas TV special this week.
ITV was thrown into turmoil earlier this year after the former This Morning presenter admitted to an ‘ill-advised but not illegal’ relationship with a much younger colleague, with the presenter pulling out of ITV altogether.
And referring to the scandal during the filming of his show, Chatty Man Alan, 47, made a very cheeky joke.
As he took to the stage he said: ‘Oh, Hackney, why did I say I’d be filming this in the middle of a bloody heatwave?
“I’m sweating here like Phillip Schofield’s lawyer, honestly!” The mirror reported.
Naughty: Alan Carr, 47, took a cheeky swipe at Phillip Schofield while filming his Christmas TV special this week
Scandal: ITV was thrown into turmoil earlier this year after admitting an ‘unwise but not illegal’ relationship with a much younger colleague
Alan remained friends with the presenter, 61, after appearing on This Morning in 2015.
During the show, Phillip was armed not only with tequila, but also with the dreaded worm found at the bottom, as he challenged the comedian to a drinking contest. Alan then forgot the name of his own TV show.
They reunited three years later, with Alan left so hungover from his night out with Phillip that he fell into Hyde Park’s Serpentine the next day.
In the months surrounding the scandal, This Morning faced widespread criticism, with ITV staff being questioned about what exactly they knew about the affair, leading to the broadcaster announcing that they would be calling in Jane Mulcahy KC to ‘conduct an external investigation to establish the facts’. .
Jane Mulcahy KC has been brought in to lead the external review of the facts surrounding the scandal and is expected to publish her findings in September.
Holly is said to be one of the people who work at This Morning and helped Jane with her questions.
Meanwhile, senior ITV executives, including boss Kevin Lygo, have also been spoken to as the ongoing investigation continues.
Speaking at the Edinburgh TV Festival this week, the ITV director said: ‘She (Mulcahy) has spoken to everyone involved, they take your phone and look at every text message you’ve ever sent, email, WhatsApp.
Joke: When he went on stage he said, ‘Oh, Hackney, why did I say I’d be filming this in the middle of a heat wave? To be honest, I’m sweating like Phillip Schofield’s lawyer here!’
“So everything is available, lots of interviews, talking to everyone and I hope as soon as possible, but probably in September she will make that public.”
On how ITV handles the duty of care, he added: ‘We take it, believe me, incredibly seriously.
“We have nothing to hide and if we can adapt and change our process to make it better, then we should continue to do so.”
ITV bosses were under pressure to admit what they knew and when about the veteran presenter’s affair with a much younger colleague. They previously refused to answer questions from the Mail about the investigation they claimed to have conducted in 2020 and whether a new investigation would be opened.
Earlier this year, in ITV’s first concession to potential wrongdoing following the scandal, human resources chief David Osborn informed staff of the review in the hope of quelling growing discontent.
Under-fire CEO Carolyn McCall sent an almost identical letter to Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer, chair of culture committee Dame Caroline Dinenage and TV regulator Ofcom.
Dame Carolyn wrote: ‘You will have seen the significant media coverage of Phillip Schofield. As you would expect, we are taking the matter very seriously and have been examining our own data this weekend.” She said ITV investigated “when rumors of a relationship between Phillip Schofield and an ITV employee first began circulating in late 2019/early 2020.”
Her letter continued: ‘Both parties were then questioned and categorically and repeatedly denied the rumors…
‘In addition, ITV spoke to a number of people working in the This Morning and wider daytime team who were given no information and found no evidence of a relationship beyond rumor and hearsay.
“Given the persistent rumors, we continued to ask questions of both parties, both of whom continued to deny the rumors, even this month.”
But sources close to the former production assistant said he insisted ITV never asked him about the relationship.
Further questions were raised when Eamonn Holmes, who presented Friday’s edition of This Morning until 2021, claimed the young lover was taken to work from Schofield’s home in ITV taxis – after the assistant and Schofield enjoyed ‘playtime on Thursday’.
Dame Carolyn’s letter ended with these words: ‘We have now commissioned Jane Mulcahy KC (Blackstone Chambers) to conduct an external investigation to establish the facts. She will look at our data and talk to those involved. This work also looks at our relevant processes… and whether we need to change or strengthen them.”
Ms Mulcahy, 62, represented the England and Wales Cricket Board earlier this year when it brought charges of alleged racism against former England captain Michael Vaughan, who was later acquitted. She also acted for former BBC China editor Carrie Gracie in her successful fight against equal pay.
Investigations: Jane Mulcahy KC of Blackstone Chambers has been commissioned by ITV to conduct an external investigation into the scandal
Doing her bit: This Morning host Holly, 42, is said to have ‘fully complied and co-operated with everything the KC has asked of her,’ reports The Mirror
In a statement to the Mail, Schofield admitted he had lied about a one-time relationship with the man, which took place while he was married to his wife, Stephanie Lowe, mother of his two adult daughters.
Dame Carolyn said in her letter that she would ‘set out some facts’ after what she said was ‘much inaccuracy in reporting’.
The Mail on Sunday revealed that Schofield met his lover when he was 15 and that the presenter was in his late 40s and gave a talk to a theater school as a favor for a friend.
The relationship began after the would-be runner, who turned 18, moved to London and started working on This Morning.