Britain's Got Talent producers apologise to David Walliams over X-rated 'hot mic' transcript leak

27 November 2023, 19:34 | Updated: 27 November 2023, 19:40

Fremantle has apologised to Walliams
Fremantle has apologised to Walliams. Picture: Alamy

By Will Taylor

David Walliams has been given an apology after transcripts of his remarks as a judge on Britain's Got Talent leaked.

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The ex-judge has been given a reported seven-figure sum in the out of court agreement after he lost his £1m contract on the huge ITV show.

The transcripts showed he calling an elderly contestant a "c***" as they left the stage while he said another was like a boring girl "that thinks you want to f*** them, but you don't".

Walliams sued Fremantle, which produces Britain's Got Talent, for misuse of private information and data protection breaches over the "hot mic" incident in January 2020.

High Court documents showed he accused the production firm of causing him psychiatric harm and financial loss.

But a Fremantle spokesperson said on Monday: "We are pleased that we have achieved an amicable resolution of this dispute with David.

Read more: David Walliams sues Britain's Got Talent bosses after leaving show in aftermath of X-rated remarks about contestants

"We are sincerely sorry that his private conversations when a judge on Britain's Got Talent were published, and the great distress this caused David.

"We have reviewed our production practices on the show to ensure they fully respect the expectations of our talent whilst satisfying the requirements of the show.

"We have enjoyed a great relationship with David over many years.

"We thank David for being an important part of the Britain's Got Talent family and the enduring success of the show and hope to have opportunities to work with him in the future."

Walliams, 52, left the show after the transcript leaked to The Guardian in November 2022.

Documents showed Walliams believed Fremantle "must be the ultimate source" of the transcripts, and he believed they held notes of "everything he said".

Judges like Simon Cowell and Amanda Holden would not routinely remove their microphones and he feared other private conversations, including talks about his wife leaving him, food addiction and his father's death, could also have been recorded, Walliams had claimed.

Dr Mark Collins, a retired psychiatrist, had said Walliams "is plagued by uncontrollable negative thoughts", including "active suicidal thoughts" and he is "on heavier doses of medication than at any time during my being his consultant psychiatrist".

The negative publicity also "very severely reduced" his earnings, the comedian alleged. He was later replaced by Bruno Tonioli as judge.