Ant McPartlin and Dec Donnelly hope to celebrate the return of Saturday Night Takeaway next month with a ITV deal expected to be worth around £40million.
Reports at Christmas suggested they had already agreed a contract but Declan Donnelly, 44, told the Mirror: “We are in talks, it will be for a few more years but nothing is signed yet. Not yet.
“We are hoping to get it signed before we start Takeaway.”
Anthony McPartlin, 44, added: “You know we love working with ITV, they have been great supporters of us, so it will happen.
"We can’t wait for Takeaway to come back, we have really missed making it. We are already doing stuff for it at the moment so with that and Britain’s Got Talent we are very busy.”
The deal is expected to be a three-year golden handcuffs contract. There has been interest from other channels and streaming giants including Amazon but the Geordie duo are staying put for now. The hugely popular Saturday Night Takeaway began in 2002 and features sketches, celebrity guests, stunts, and games for the audience.
The pair were speaking backstage at the National TV Awards at the 02 on Tuesday, where they were reunited with I’m A Celeb’s Caitlyn Jenner, 70.
The duo admitted they felt they owe their fans more than ever for their 19th NTA Presenter award win, as viewers had stuck with them through Ant’s drink and drug battle.
Ant returned to TV a year ago after taking time out following his conviction for drink driving.
Clutching his award, he said: “As you get older, the more grateful you are because it is voted for by the viewers. We have been around for so long and you know we are still up there and they are still voting for us, so we are very thankful.
“Yeah, we’ve had a couple of difficult years. We have had ups and downs and they have stuck with us and viewers are still voting for us, and for that we are eternally grateful.”
Dec also admitted having not one but two trophy cabinets in his home after all the wins. He said: “It’s in the front room next to the television so everyone that comes in sees them.” The pair also discussed last year’s documentary series DNA Journey, explaining why they chose to be so candid in it.
In the two-parter, Dec said he feared he had “lost” his friend Ant when he went to rehab, while Ant thought he may never work again if the public turned against him following his conviction.
However, the hosts are as successful as ever.
Ant said the show, which took more than two years to make, led them to “places physically and emotionally” they never thought they would go.
“It was one hell of a show,” he added. “We learned a lot about each other… about ourselves. It was a really enjoyable but emotional process.”
“We decided we would keep it in, and talk about it, because we had to. It’s such an honest show – if we’d have dodged it, it would have been dishonest. The end result was crazy.”
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