It was the drama that gripped morning television viewers through the summer of 2023; after faux pas Queuegate, the relationship between ‘This Morning’ hosts Phillip Schofield and Holly Willougby was falling apart in front of our very eyes with a very public statement made by Schofield that everything between them was ok.
Alas, as we know now, it wasn’t - Schofield left ITV’s morning lifestyle show in May 2023 with Holly Willoughby remaining and a rotating cast of guest presenters appearing alongside her. She even gave a poignant speech when she first returned to the couch, one that many ‘The Morning Show’ viewers felt was a direct rip of Jennifer Aniston’s speech at the end of the first episode of the AppleTV+ series.
But much like we were captivated by the ‘Wagatha Christie’ trial, the ‘This Morning’ saga is now rumoured to be adapted into a television series depicting the behind-the-scenes turmoil that we only caught a glimpse of through social media posts and gossip column speculation.
According to The Sun, ‘The Runner,’ the tentative title of the show, will be a reimagined account tracing the course of the scandal until Phillip Schofield, aged 61, resigned in May after serving as the host for 21 years. The series looks to focus on the moments when he ‘deceived’ his co-presenter Holly Willoughby, aged 42, along with the show's executives and management firm YMU regarding his extramarital affair.
The source who related the information to The Sun said also the production company involved thinks it would be “a perfect fit for Channel 4. The storyline will reflect what went on. People have seen it from the outside but the drama will give a perspective on what may have occurred behind closed doors.”
Channel 4 has previously screened dramatisations of the ‘Wagatha Christie’ trial and Prince Andrew’s horror interview with Newsnight, so the source might be onto something. But who on earth could play Phillip and who would play Holly?
Who could play Phillip and Holly in the proposed TV series?
This is a two-part question: who could play Phillip and Holly, and who would want to play the pair in a drama series? We’ve decided to stick with the who could rather than who would, in the interests of light reading.
AI kept telling us that Brian Dennehy would be a good choice to play Phillip - we’re admirers of Brian (‘Cocoon’ is brilliant), but we think Phillip might not be too happy with that comparison. But we thought that either Martin Kemp, Brian Conley or James Farrar could be good choices to play the tricky role of Phil.
We had a chat and felt that Natalie Imbruglia could be an interesting choice to play Holly Willougby. Imbruglia has acting experience through her time on ‘Neighbours’ and as Marina Licht pointed out, the eyes are eerily similar to Holly’s.
Then again, AI has told us that Emma Stone could be another good contender if she ever decided that Hollywood was becoming a drag. We imagine it is because of their similar jawline and lips - but that is again a fantastical idea as someone who could play her.
Instead, we thought Michelle Keegan could be a solid choice - though she doesn’t look explicitly like Holly, with the right hair and make-up she could pass off as the ‘This Morning’ host alongside Keegan’s prior works in TV dramas, particularly those adapted from real-life events (such as ‘Our Girl’).
Do you agree with our choices? Who do you think could play Phillip and Holly in a TV drama?