STRICTLY Come Dancing bosses fear Bruno Tonioli will quit show to remain in the States – but will 'replace him' with Anton du Beke.
The Mail on Sunday claims the 65-year-old judge, who lives in Los Angeles, has left bossed worried he won't be part of the 2021 series because of travel restrictions between the US and UK due to Covid-19.
Bruno was unable to take part in last year's series and only featured in brief video links during the Sunday results shows.
Bruno usually flies back and forth between the two countries as he also acts as a judge on Dancing with the Stars, for which he is paid significantly more than his stint on the UK judging panel.
But with travel restrictions set to remain in place for some time due to the ongoing pandemic, Strictly bosses are reportedly nervous to have a repeat situation of the 2020 series.
A source told The Mail on Sunday: "This time last year Bruno had been signed up but things are so much less certain now.
"It is very unlikely the BBC will allow themselves to be in the same position they were this year and end up spending so much money for such little value.
"Bruno chose Dancing With The Stars over Strictly, that's no secret. If he does the same again this year, things will be tricky. There is the perfect replacement waiting in the wings – Anton."
Pro dancer Anton, 54, finally had his chance to join the judging panel for two weeks in the most recent series as he stepped in for Motsi Mabuse while she was in Germany.
Anton is the only professional dancer who has been on the show since it began, and has regularly spoken about his dream of being a judge.
His wish finally came true last year and he was a big hit with viewers during his two weeks on the panel.
However, The Sun on Sunday previously revealed Anton's success as a judge had left Bruno 'worried' about his future on the show.
The Sun Online has contacted a representative for Strictly for comment.
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