Ant and Dec have revealed in their new autobiography Once Upon A Tyne how they secretly tried to quit Britain's Got Talent.
The Geordie duo have explained how they locked horns with ITV bosses because they weren't happy with how their work was edited.
Lifting the lid on their showbiz careers, Ant, 44, writes: "It was on a trip to America, in 2012, where we had to have a serious conversation with Simon.
"The previous series of BGT had been especially tricky for us two.
"The audition days had been very long, which in itself we don’t mind, but after filming interviews and interacting with every single act, as well as making jokes, giving reactions and everything else we always do, we found that when the show went out on TV, we hardly seemed to feature in it at all.
“We began to feel that we were wasting our time doing the auditions because all the footage of the work we were doing was ending up on the cutting-room floor.
"And, what’s more, with Saturday Night Takeaway about to come back into our schedule, we could have been putting our efforts into that in January, when the auditions happen.
“The experience left us feeling like we were being sidelined.”
Revealing the gravity of the situation in the extracts syndicated to The Sun, Dec adds: “We’d been to see the bosses at ITV and told them we were strongly considering leaving BGT.
“At that stage, it felt like it may as well have been anyone hosting the show and we said that when our current contract expired, we thought it was time to move on.
“This isn’t something we’re in the habit of doing and they aren’t easy conversations to have, but we felt like honesty was the best policy.
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“I remember waking up in Birmingham on the last day of the 2012 tour, opening my curtains and thinking, ‘Well, this is the last time I’ll be doing this’.”
After a showdown face to face meeting in LA, Simon managed to win the lads over.
"He made a promise to us: that things would change and that we’d never feel like that again," the duo continue in book.
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“He desperately wanted us to stay and we told him we’d do the next series and see how it went — and, to be fair to him, he was as good as his word, things did change.
“At the end of the evening, Simon offered us a lift back to our hotel in his chauffeur-driven Rolls-Royce.
"We were only staying around the corner, but apparently nobody walks anywhere in LA; plus, we’d never been in a Rolls-Royce before, so we said yes, settled the bill and made our way to the car.”
- Britains Got Talent
- Simon Cowell
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