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These morning phone calls ‘will be heavily vetted to avoid blowouts’ amid the Phillip Schofield scandal


ITV’s This Morning will introduce format changes including ‘heavy vetting’ of public callers to protect presenters from outbursts over the Phil Schofield scandal, while Holly Willoughby prepares to return to the bench tomorrow.

Production staff will take on the important role of screening callers, as audience interaction segments must also be paused to prevent abuse being sent to presenters.

It comes as Holly prepares an “honest and personal statement” to address the departure of her former co-star, who recently admitted lying about an affair with a younger male colleague, as she returns to the program on Monday.

Her return to the bench, joined by former guest host Josie Gibson, will mark a permanent change in the lineup as viewers face an altered show, with fewer opportunities to engage with live presenters.

It was also reported today that Holly is being courted by BBC bosses who want to lure her away from ITV.

As Holly Willoughby (pictured this week in Portugal) prepares to return to This Morning, producers bring in strict scrutiny standards for public callers

Holly will appear alongside co-host Josie Gibson when she returns to the show this week

Holly will appear alongside co-host Josie Gibson when she returns to the show this week

This Morning’s social media accounts have been quiet since Phillip Schofield admitted his affair with the former runner on the show, whom he first met when he attended the man’s school when he was just 15.

Only one post has been shared since May 26, when Schofield admitted to the affair and apologized for lying about it.

The show’s attempt to keep a low profile comes after weeks of front-page coverage of the pair’s friendship breakup and revelations about Phil’s love life.

This cautious approach will be repeated in episodes themselves starting this week, with production staff “heavily vetting” callers to filter out any viewer outbursts, the Sun reports.

Viewers will also no longer be able to submit photos and social media posts in interactive segments, and these parts of the show will also be paused indefinitely.

ITV has been contacted for comment on the changes.

It’s because Holly has been on vacation in Portugal this week and hasn’t appeared on This Morning for the past two weeks, but will be returning to the show following the departure of her former co-host.

Holly wants to address the scandal and explain to viewers how difficult things have been for those who worked on the show in recent weeks, a source said. The sun.

Holly Willoughby will return to present This Morning on Monday and has issued a statement to address the Phillip Schofield scandal

Holly Willoughby will return to present This Morning on Monday and has issued a statement to address the Phillip Schofield scandal

The presenter has been on holiday in Portugal this week following Phillip's departure from ITV

The presenter has been on holiday in Portugal this week following Phillip’s departure from ITV

The source said, “She will be honest and open and call him by name. She does not shy away from the tricky subject, because she wants to show herself to the viewers and loyal fans.

“She’s thought about what she’s going to say and wrote it down beforehand, taking her time to get the words right. It’s not something she’s forced to do.

“It’s not going to be an easy moment for her and she knows she can get emotional, but she thinks it’s the right thing to do and wants to talk about it honestly.”

The statement would be scheduled for the top of Monday’s show, when Holly appears alongside co-host Josie Gibson and Craig Doyle.

She will then host much of the rest of the show as normal, including an interview with Queen singer Adam Lambert, it has been reported.

Photos of Phillip have reportedly been removed from the ITV studios, but the move is meant to mark a change of direction rather than a distaste for the former presenter.

Meanwhile, the BBC is said to be interested in signing Holly for some new shows and an executive has been in touch with her in recent days, The mirror reported.

The company is said to have discussed what high-profile programs she could present if she makes the switch from ITV.

A source said: “The bosses have had talks this week about what they can offer her in the future.

Holly and Phil present This Morning together in May before he leaves the programme

Holly and Phil present This Morning together in May before he leaves the programme

And an executive reached out to her directly earlier this week.

“Holly was still on vacation at the time. But she values ​​her relationship with the BBC and the friendships she has built there.”

The news comes after This Morning editor Martin Frizell sensationally suggested that ex-stars of the show are “settling scores” amid allegations of a “toxic” work environment.

Mr Frizell – who is married to TV presenter Fiona Phillips – said to ‘read between the lines’ and added: ‘I think some accounts are being settled’ when asked if there was a toxic culture during the show.

Speaking on Saturday morning, Mr Frizell denied he was ‘concerned’ about an external review to be carried out in ITV after MPs and leading industry figures raised concerns about protection.

He added: “All I want to say is I work with a fantastic team of mostly women, a lot of mothers, a lot of them are worried about their jobs, although we’ve told them there’s no need to.”

It’s because today the Mail on Sunday is able to expose the extent of This Morning’s toxic culture and how some staff found the atmosphere so frightening they had to undergo therapy.

Sexism has also been cited by a former employee.

This Morning’s editor, Martin Frizell, was the subject of an investigation in 2019 when a senior female member of staff – a single mother – raised his behavior with ITV executives. The channel said no evidence was found after the probe.

The file comes after the show’s former medical expert, Dr. Ranj Singh, revealed that he too had raised concerns about Mr Frizell’s behavior with Emma Gormley, head of the network.

An investigation has been carried out and again no abuse was found. The Doctor then claims that he has been “guided” out of his role.

Dr. Singh spoke out after ITV’s top management – CEO Carolyn McCall, Television Director Kevin Lygo, Ms Gormley and Mr Frizell – all insisted they had no idea Schofield had been involved with a much younger colleague.

They also say they were unaware that the junior member of staff was subsequently transferred to another ITV show, Loose Women, where another man lost his job to make way for him. But their insistence that they were unaware of the whole scandal has sparked anger among ITV staff.

Others have had to sign non-disclosure agreements after pay packages were arranged to “cover up” what a former employee described as the “culture of bullying and toxic blame.”

Feud: Holly and Phil have stopped speaking, according to Phil in his recent interview

Feud: Holly and Phil have stopped speaking, according to Phil in his recent interview

On Tuesday, Martin Goswami, director of strategic partnerships and distribution for the ITV group, will be questioned by a cross-party Commons selection committee about the poison at the heart of the channel. The next day, Dame Carolyn is questioned by the MPs.

Meanwhile, several former employees have shared horror stories with The Mail on Sunday.

One woman said, “I worked there for six years. I have felt a huge sense of relief that this story has finally come out as it deals with abuses of power and cover-ups.

“I left This Morning with a financial payout and had to sign an NDA (non-disclosure agreement) to say I wouldn’t talk about the culture of bullying and toxic blaming I went through there.

“Fifteen years later, I still can’t watch the show, and even hearing the theme song gives me a cold sweat. I won’t go into details, but my healing from years of hell—when I wished I’d get run over by a bus on my walk from the office to the studio—begins and ends here with this simple admission that signing a non-disclosure agreement to cover up toxicity is not okay.”

A man in his twenties said: ‘When Phillip said things like ‘We’re all one big happy family’ I thought that was a lot of bullshit***.

“He doesn’t know what researchers and assistant producers go through, and I had to quit. It seriously affected my mental health. I was belittled and not supported.’

The man, who claims to have been demoted from assistant producer to researcher, said he only lasted five months. “After I got a job at This Morning, I felt like I won the lottery,” he said, “but within weeks I felt undermined and ready to fail at every turn.” They wanted me out because my face didn’t fit, I was too quiet, not loud or flashy.

“My producer was a bully. It killed my confidence and ITV offered no support other than to suggest that this was my problem to deal with. I blame the culture at ITV, of which Phil was just a part. They saw me as an outsider because I was from the Northwest. There was a culture that if you weren’t part of the clique you were persona non grata and I felt the hostility almost from the start.”

He described the culture on This Morning as “toxic, highly competitive and cut-throat” and claimed that Schofield was “ignoring” junior staff, adding: “It’s a top-down organisation… and if you’re closer to the bottom, don’t don’t you think it doesn’t mean anything, you’re just disposable.

Another former staff member who left in 2019 told bosses in her exit report that “there is a culture of harassment at This Morning,” adding that she witnessed a number of incidents where she felt one of the bosses was being unreasonable and unkind to a female producer and it created a climate of fear.’ She added, “I’ve also overheard sexist comments.”

It comes after Schofield first spoke out this week in an interview with the BBC, in which he appeared to accept that his television career was over.

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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