EXCLUSIVE: James Argent’s TOWIE ban was lifted, paving the way for his return two years after drug test failure as he lands a cameo on Kousoulou and Tommy Mallett’s new Georgia spin-off show
James Argent’s TOWIE ban has been lifted to pave the way for his return – two years after he failed a drug test and was kicked off the series.
The reality fave, 33, filmed a cameo appearance Friday for co-stars Georgia Kousoulou and Tommy Mallett’s new spin-off show, which is being made by TOWIE producers.
It could be the beginning of a resurgence in fortune for James, who underwent life-saving gastric banding in January after winning 26 stone and suffered two near-fatal overdoses while battling cocaine addiction.
‘Excited’: James Argent’s TOWIE ban lifted, paving the way for his return – two years after failing a drug test and being kicked off the series (pictured Friday)
A TV insider told MailOnline: ‘James was delighted to be able to film again on Friday. He’s been focusing on his mental and physical health for the past six months and now he’s finally starting to feel the benefits.
“His relationship with Lime Pictures is also on the rise, where he hopes one day he can rejoin TOWIE and put everything that happened in the past behind him.”
James joined close friends Georgia and Tommy, both 29, as they filmed the finale of their upcoming spin-off show, which will document them as new parents.
The couple, who welcomed son Brody in May, confirmed they had already finished shooting their ITVBe series, with Georgia saying on Instagram: ‘And that’s a wrap. Available soon! We can’t wait for you to see our show, to be with us on this journey, so grateful for everything in my life.”
Happy: The reality fave, 33, filmed a cameo appearance Friday for co-stars Georgia Kousoulou and Tommy Mallett’s new spin-off show, which is being made by TOWIE producers
In May 2019, TOWIE severed ties with James, who first joined the series in 2010 after testing positive for cocaine, five years after being suspended in a similar incident.
A source revealed at the time that Lime Pictures no longer wanted to work with him after he also filmed scenes for ex-girlfriend Gemma Collins’ show Diva Forever.
TOWIE producers forced a hiatus from his celebrations in 2014, and James checked into a Thai rehab facility three years later for his “mental and physical well-being.”
Last year, James spoke about his battle with addiction, telling how he “reached the bottom” after locking himself in his house and “taking drugs on his own for three days.”
He said: ‘I was at a low point. My heart was beating out of my chest, my nose was bleeding, I was shaking and my breathing was terrible.
“My family banged on the door and yelled, ‘Open the door’, but I didn’t open it for anyone. They were afraid I’d overdosed and was dead in the house.’
On the rise: Last year, James spoke about his battle with addiction, sharing how he reached ‘rock bottom’ after locking himself in his house and ‘using drugs for three days in a row’ (pictured in 2021)
In January, James marked a year of sobriety, and last month revealed he is halfway through his weight loss mission after losing four stones since having his gastric band surgery.
He hopes to lose a total of eight stones after the procedure removes 70 percent of his stomach.
James admitted that he had put on weight in lockdown after trading alcohol and drug addiction for food, and that he couldn’t bear to look at his own reflection.
He said last month: ‘It felt awful, I always felt extremely uncomfortable, I couldn’t look at myself in the mirror.
“It felt depressing and it just wasn’t me. Now I’m starting to feel like myself again and I’m excited about what the future will bring.
“It was scary being 27 stone. It was serious, doctors told me how dangerous it was. I knew it was something I had to tackle pretty quickly.”
Throwback: James joined TOWIE in 2010 along with his good friend Mark Wright, Lauren Goodger, Sam Faiers, Amy Childs and his childhood sweetheart Lydia Bright (pictured in 2011)