Ant McPartlin says he's 'so much more grateful' after his 'break' from TV career with Dec Donnelly

ANT McPartlin has revealed he's "so much more grateful" for his TV career with Dec Donnelly after he was forced to take a break.

Ant and Dec are nominated once again in the best entertainment category at the Baftas tomorrow night after receiving 13 to date.

And now Ant has reflected on how the Geordie TV duo were torn apart in 2018 when he crashed his Mini into a family’s car causing a child to require medical attention.

Ant was suspended from presenting duties on Saturday Night Takeaway and lost his licence for 15 months.

He was also fined £86,000 after admitting being more than twice the drink-drive limit when he crashed in Richmond, South West London.

“You know, we had a bit of a break in our career a couple of years ago and then got back together,” Ant told The Times.

“We’re so much more grateful for everything.”

When asked if his return to TV is a bit of a miracle, Ant said: "Yes, for me personally.

"Just to be doing work again with my best friend and enjoying myself and having a laugh."

They also reflected on their enduring frienship and professional working relationship that's lasted over 30 years.

“A lot of double acts only last for a certain amount of time and are very short-lived,” Ant said.

Dec said it "always disappoints" him when double acts secretly hate each other.

"I think the difference is ours is a professional relationship built on a friendship, not a friendship built on a professional relationship," Dec explained.

"It’s friendship first and foremost. That's a solid foundation."

The boys faced another road bump when the coronavirus pandemic hit and Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway returned this year with the studio audience replaced by a home audience shown on a huge video wall.

"There were so many times we’d thought, ‘God, is it actually going to happen? Are we going to be able to make this studio-based liveentertainment show?’" said Dec.

"It was not just having a live audience. It was, ‘How do we get guests there? How do we surprise people? How do we give away holidays when nobody can travel anywhere? How can we make this show in the current restrictions?’

“The planning and the preproduction that went on were so intense. It went on for such a long time. So when we finally walked out on that first show we were like, ‘We’re live and we’re in people’s living rooms and there’s
people there looking back at us.’ It was quite overwhelming."

Ant agreed: "Yes, by the time we got on stage and said, ‘Welcome to the show,’ it was quite emotional."

Tune in to see if Ant and Dec win their 14th Bafta on Sunday night at 7pm on BBC One.

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