‘Why disgraced Phillip Schofield won’t be back on TV any time soon’

Phillip Schofield surprised fans last week when he was spotted out in public twice. But while rumours are rife that the presenter could be plotting a TV comeback, a source tells OK! he has no imminent plans to return to
our screens – and his former co-host and best friend Holly Willoughby is relieved.

Phillip was pictured helping his pal and former This Morning colleague Vanessa Feltz into a car after they dined at the Little Bird restaurant in Chiswick.

Four days later, he was seen sipping a Bloody Mary cocktail and enjoying a burger at The Weir Bar in Brentford with a female companion. They were the first public sightings of the 61-year-old since his resignation from ITV in May after he admitted to an “unwise but not illegal” affair with a younger male colleague.

The source said that while the outings have stirred up rumours that Phillip could be about to make a comeback, there are no plans for a return to the screen, as broadcasters are still wary about the public’s perception.

“There were rumours flying around about him making a comeback, but that just isn’t going to happen. TV channels are keeping their distance,” said the source.

“Vanessa was putting the feelers out to TalkTV producers about Phil having a segment there, but they gave her a hard ‘no’. He’s almost been blacklisted from TV.”

Asked about a possible move to TalkTV, the presenter’s lawyer Jonathan Coad told OK! he had “not heard anything to that effect from Phillip”.

Shortly after leaving ITV in May, Phillip gave an interview to the BBC in which he admitted that the affair was his “fault” and described it as the “biggest, sorriest secret”.

He said the relentless media scrutiny had had drastic effects on his mental health and had led him to contemplate suicide.

Brand expert Dermot McNamara exclusively tells OK! that Phil is not ready to return to the screen yet.

He says, “I don’t think he’ll be wanting to come back into TV at the moment. He can get jobs on his own, he doesn’t need Vanessa to get him a job at TalkTV. He’s still bigger than Vanessa.

“If he wants to look for work, he probably will find it, because the BBC interview went relatively well for him.

“Most broadcasters would be a bit worried because they won’t want to be seen rewarding bad behaviour. Regardless of it being ‘unwise but not illegal’, this has huge duty of care ramifications on the people concerned. If anyone does decide to give him a platform again, they’ll have to be careful.”

Dermot says he would advise Phillip to stay out of the limelight for at least a year because of the effects to his mental health and the uncertainty of the results of the ongoing ITV investigation into the circumstances surrounding his exit from the channel.

“I don’t think it’s the right time for Phillip to suddenly go back into TV,” he says. “He should stay off for another year. He’s probably enjoying a bit of a break, to be honest.”

Another PR expert, Mark Borkowski, agrees it is likely that Phillip will not be back on our screens for a year.

He tells OK!, “The photos of Phillip out and about have such collateral because people are waiting for him to do something and there is no need for him to do anything.

“If he’s sensible he’ll be out of commission for about a year and by then, people will have moved on and other celebrities would have found themselves being whacked. Then there is every opportunity to have a platform to recover.

“If he does anything now, it will bring back those negative headlines from May.”

However, Mark says he can see Phillip back on screen in the future. “I wouldn’t rule him out coming back on the TV. He’s an entertainer, he’s one of the rare people who can do live TV, so he has a lot in the tank. Never write an obituary for someone until they’re dead.”

Last week, it was reported that Phillip’s former This Morning co-host Holly will be given a £300,000 pay increase to £1 million when she returns to the sofa as the lead host after her summer break.

Our source said that Holly, 42, is breathing a sigh of relief that Phillip’s comeback strategy isn’t set to happen any time soon.

“Holly is relieved because she dreaded running into the same circles as him in the future. She still feels so let down over it all,” the source said.

Meanwhile, mum-of-three Holly has shared a racy new blog post on her lifestyle brand Wylde Moon about “orgasm anxiety” .

The post was written by author Kate Lucey, who addressed the anxiety that can be caused by an inability to reach sexual climax.

Our source said Holly is keen on showing her “sexy” side.

“Holly is showing another side to herself so that, if it came down to it, she could rebrand herself as someone new. She knows her prudish, skirt-to-her-shins persona worked perfectly for This Morning audiences, but that’s only one aspect of her personality,” said our source.

“She was once a co-panellist on Celebrity Juice and was always making rude remarks and dirty jokes with Keith Lemon. She thinks being sexy will spice up This Morning s ratings. She’s open to everything.”


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