Mabel turns down Walk the Line

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Mabel won't be on Walk the Line credit:Bang Showbiz
Mabel won't be on Walk the Line credit:Bang Showbiz

Mabel has pulled out of judging 'Walk the Line'.

The 25-year-old singer had been in advanced talks to sit on the panel for the new ITV talent show but she's reportedly decided against the job after executive producer Simon Cowell announced he won't be appearing in front of the camera.

A source told the Daily Star Sunday newspaper: "Mabel was initially excited to be involved. But when she heard Simon had quit, she wasn't keen any more. His exit was a big factor in her decision to go."

Producers are said to be "stunned" at Mabel's decision and face a race against time to complete the judging panel, which will be led by Take That singer Gary Barlow.

Another source told the publication: "Everything was in place for Mabel to do the show and this was going to be her first big telly project.

"But now she's pulled out at the 11th hour.

"The show’s producers are stunned. They’re really disappointed to lose her.

"It’s going to be a challenge getting a decent celeb at the last minute."

An ITV spokesperson played down the news.

They said in a statement: "The full line-up for the show will be confirmed in due course."

Simon recently explained he isn't taking on a judging role because he is keen to focus on his behind-the-scenes commitments as executive producer and creator of the new show.

Simon said: “This is a situation where I have decided it is right for me to focus on my role as the Creator and Producer as we build up to the hugely exciting launch.

“Gary’s musical pedigree is second to none – and we have known each other a long time now - so I am delighted he is picking up the baton for me for the first series of 'Walk The Line'. I know he will do a fantastic job.”

Gary - who was a judge on 'The X Factor' between 2011 and 2013 - is "so excited" about his new job.

He said: "When Simon calls it’s usually with something fairly extraordinary.

“I’m so excited to be involved in a brand-new TV show, and of course my favourite part of 'Walk the Line' is discovering new talent.”

The "high octane musical gameshow" will be hosted by Maya Jama and Craig David is also in the frame to be a judge.

The show will broadcast over six consecutive nights and could see contestants win up to £500,000.

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