Amanda Holden claims SHE opened 'the can of worms' regarding 'toxic' Phillip Schofield

Amanda Holden has weighed into the latest controversy surrounding Phillip Schofield by praising his This Morning co-hosts for standing up for themselves amid a slew of alleged complaints regarding his behaviour. 

The 48-year old previously hit out at Schofield over claims he blocked her from filling in for regular co-host Holly Willoughby while she spent three weeks in Australia presenting I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! 

The veteran star, 57, has since been accused of creating a ‘toxic atmosphere’ on the set of the ITV show, with allegations of ongoing feuds with Holly and This Morning stand-in hosts Ruth Langsford and Eamonn Holmes.

Speaking out: Amanda Holden has weighed into the controversy surrounding Phillip Schofield by claiming her original comments about the This Morning host sparked a slew of fresh complaints

Speaking out: Amanda Holden has weighed into the controversy surrounding Phillip Schofield by claiming her original comments about the This Morning host sparked a slew of fresh complaints

Addressing the latest claims on her Heart Radio show, Holden insisted she had moved on from her own spat with Schofield, but conceded it may well have lit a fuse. 

‘Listen, I've drawn a line under all those issues with Phillip,’ she told fellow presenter Jamie Theakston. 

‘I'm just going to say I really admire anyone that's going to stick up for themselves because it's not an easy thing to do. 

 ‘There's a tin opener and a can somewhere and other people have found the tin opener. That's all I'm saying.’

Claim: The 48-year old previously hit out at Schofield amid claims he blocked her from filling in for regular co-host Holly Willoughby while she co-hosted I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!

Claim: The 48-year old previously hit out at Schofield amid claims he blocked her from filling in for regular co-host Holly Willoughby while she co-hosted I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!

Speaking to The Sun, Insiders previously revealed that Holden believed he scuppered her chances of filling in on This Morning during Willoughby’s absence in November and December 2018.  

It’s understood that she headed to the top by lobbying ITV executives over the animosity after Schofield allegedly pushed for former Saturdays star Rochelle Humes to take the job.

A former daytime TV executive told the publication: ‘Phillip actively campaigned for Rochelle Humes to get the job despite Amanda being more experienced – and having been told privately she'd got the gig.’

On-screen chemistry: The coveted role eventually went to former Saturdays star Rochelle Humes

On-screen chemistry: The coveted role eventually went to former Saturdays star Rochelle Humes

And addressing the host on Heart Radio in June, Holden alluded to a rift when revealing the three things things she wouldn’t like to find in her home, telling fans: ‘Spiders, flies and Phillip Schofield.' 

Schofield has since been feuding with other This Morning co-stars and the atmosphere behind the scenes has turned ‘toxic’, according to The Sun

The presenter is said to be at the centre of a ‘civil war’ at the ITV programme amid claims his attitude has impacted his professional relationships with his colleagues, including Langsford and Willoughby.

Allegation: The veteran star has since been accused of creating a 'toxic atmosphere' on the set of the ITV show, with claims of ongoing feuds with Holly and stand-in hosts Ruth Langsford and Eamonn Holmes

Allegation: The veteran star has since been accused of creating a ‘toxic atmosphere’ on the set of the ITV show, with claims of ongoing feuds with Holly and stand-in hosts Ruth Langsford and Eamonn Holmes

The publication alleges eight different ITV presenters have broken their silence about the situation, while the show’s Friday presenter Langsford, 59, is said to have made an official complaint.

However, an ITV spokesperson has strongly refuted the ‘disappointing allegations, saying they are simply ‘malicious gossip’.

The denial comes after a report stated the situation behind the scenes at This Morning had become ‘toxic’ in recent months, with employees too scared to speak out publicly for fear of backlash.

Rumours: Tension started when Langsford and Schofield spoke over each other while doing a live preview of Loose Women in April and the tension remains 'toxic' when the cameras aren't rolling, according to an anonymous source

Rumours: Tension started when Langsford and Schofield spoke over each other while doing a live preview of Loose Women in April and the tension remains ‘toxic’ when the cameras aren’t rolling, according to an anonymous source

An ITV source told The Sun: ‘For so long people have been silenced because they are scared for their job. If they speak out publicly about the atmosphere they fear there could be repercussions.’

A insider close to Holly told the paper: ‘It's true there have been some issues. They're like brothers and sisters – they have ups and downs but love each other.’

Hitting back at the reports, however, a spokesperson for ITV said: ‘It's deeply disappointing and unfair for Phillip to be the target of this sort of malicious gossip.

Missing: Holly shared a snap form the This Morning Christmas party on Instagram in which regular Friday hosts Ruth and Eamonn were nowhere to be seen

Missing: Holly shared a snap form the This Morning Christmas party on Instagram in which regular Friday hosts Ruth and Eamonn were nowhere to be seen

‘Phillip is a much respected broadcaster and colleague and this is absolutely not a description of This Morning that we recognise.

‘Holly and Phil are great friends both on and off screen and are popular among viewers and colleagues alike.’

Martin Frizell, Editor of This Morning said: ‘I spend hundreds of days a year in their company and what you see is what you get, a genuine friendship from a couple who are both spontaneously funny and professional.

‘We have the smartest viewers watching telly and believe me they would be the first to notice any issues – they haven't because there are none.’

Rumoured rift: To make matters worse, Schofield is reported to have been furious at Holly Willoughby (pictured with Declan Donnelly in a promotion picture) landing a lead presenting role on last years I'm A Celebrity while Ant McPartlin recovered from alcohol issues

Rumoured rift: To make matters worse, Schofield is reported to have been furious at Holly Willoughby (pictured with Declan Donnelly in a promotion picture) landing a lead presenting role on last years I'm A Celebrity while Ant McPartlin recovered from alcohol issues

The Mail on Sunday revealed that relations on set are so bad, Langsford and husband Eamonn Holmes snubbed the show's Christmas party to avoid Schofield, after a series of behind-the-scenes rows, with the silver-maned ITV stalwart being described as 'rude'.

Langsford and Holmes host the Friday episode of This Morning and sit in for other presenters' holidays, but were surprisingly absent last week from the no-expense-spared dinner at a West London restaurant where 23 of their colleagues enjoyed a four-course meal and champagne to celebrate the holiday season.

The tension between Langsford and Schofield stems from April when they spoke over each other while she was doing a live preview of Loose Women, which she also hosts. 

As he cut her off abruptly, saying: 'We're a bit tight for time at this end,' she retorted: 'I only had about two more words to say, don't worry.'

The spark: Addressing the latest claims on her Heart Radio show, Holden insisted she had moved on from her own spat with Schofield, but conceded it may well have lit a fuse

The spark: Addressing the latest claims on her Heart Radio show, Holden insisted she had moved on from her own spat with Schofield, but conceded it may well have lit a fuse

Since then, it seems relations between Schofield, Langsford and a protective Holmes have only deteriorated.

The rift is causing anxiety at YMU, the agency formerly known as James Grant, which represents all four.

It is also understood that Schofield is playing down Langsford's grievance over being cut off by insisting it was the fault of the show's production team. 

A source revealed: 'There are an increasing number of presenters who say that when the cameras aren't running the atmosphere is toxic.

'Phillip is a man with high standards, he has survived a long time in the TV world. There has been an almighty clash. There is currently one household name on ITV daytime who refers to him as "the c***".'

Barb: 'There's a tin opener and a can somewhere and other people have found the tin opener. That's all I'm saying,' she said

Barb: ‘There's a tin opener and a can somewhere and other people have found the tin opener. That's all I'm saying,’ she said

Schofield, who joined This Morning in 2002, is also said to be envious that Holmes, 60, was given an OBE last year for services to broadcasting.

And he is reported to have been furious over Willoughby landing the co-host role on last year's I'm A Celebrity while Ant McPartlin recovered from alcohol issues.

It is understood that Schofield suggested to ITV bosses that he could take the role and, when rebuffed, he suggested taking This Morning to Australia to film it from there.

Despite the controversy, Schofield has taken to Twitter to thank fans for voting for This Morning to win an I Talk Telly award – seemingly ignoring the recent rumours about him causing a ‘toxic’ atmosphere on set.

The presenter posted the video with the simple caption ‘Thank You’, in which he gushes about his and Holly’s fans, accepting the award for the fifth consecutive year. 

MailOnline has contacted a representative for further comment.  

 

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