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This Morning star slams ‘Unhealthy obsession’ with Holly and Phil’s friendship | Celebrity News | Showbiz & TV


Judy Finnigan has branded the “obsessive” scrutiny of Phillip Schofield’s friendship with Holly Willoughby “extremely upsetting”, insisting they didn’t need to be close friends to star together on This Morning.

Judy was married to her This Morning co-star husband Richard Madeley, but said she doesn’t expect other hosts to have the same on-screen chemistry.

Although she was never close to Phillip, she claimed she still considers him a friend and “doesn’t understand why he had to leave”.

“I couldn’t understand what I always thought was this unhealthy obsession with Holly and Phillip being best friends – so for the program to work they had to be so close,” said she magazine Saga.

“Programs and presenters don’t work like that… [Richard and I] married so they were supposed to be good friends,” Judy continued.

Referring to Phillip’s departure, she said sadly: “I know politics within television is very close but I find it an extraordinary disaster of a situation in the life of This Morning which I don’t think needs to happen. .”

Meanwhile, although she is quick to insist that she is not avoiding the show as “any kind of protest”, Judy has revealed that she is no longer watching the show that she spent nearly a decade and a half on present.

The 75-year-old, who ended her tenure on This Morning back in 2001, insisted that it is “very different” these days and therefore she is unlikely to promote her book on the show ever.

“[When Richard and I did the show’], we would interview people about books and you felt there was a lot of interest. I’m not sure if there will be now,” she explained.

She added that she found the tension between Holly and Phillip “hugely embarrassing” and “very upsetting”.

Earlier this year, newspaper reports circulated suggesting the pair were “barely speaking” amid backstage struggles.

It later emerged that Phillip had lied about an “illegal but not illegal” relationship with a much younger colleague, which took place during his marriage to his wife Steph.

Sources reported that he and Holly had developed a good friendship before the formal ITV investigation, despite many describing her as his “rock” after he came out as gay back in 2020.

Holly has now announced that she has decided to leave This Morning, although there is no word on whether she will return to the Dancing On Ice presenting slot she once shared with Phillip.

Meanwhile, Judy – whose latest novel Roseland is out now – has opened up about how she and Richard dealt with arguments during their own This Morning.

“We always respected each other’s opinions, which is why we managed to work so well together,” she explained.

“We might sometimes be mad at each other and not talk, but in the end that kind of thing doesn’t matter, especially as you get older.”

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