19:57 EST, 20 September 2012
19:57 EST, 20 September 2012
Well paid: Jessie J earns £200,000 a series
The over-inflated pay deals for The Voice’s judges caused serious tension within the BBC last year, even when it was expected to become a huge hit show.
But now the BBC1 talent show is widely considered to have under-performed, there’s ‘complete fury’ among other BBC stars over the salaries of Jessie J, Sir Tom Jones and Will.i.am for the second series.
Will.i.am is believed to have pocketed £600,000 last year, with Sir Tom on £300,000 and Jessie J on £200,000.
By contrast, Strictly Come Dancing’s Len Goodman, Bruno Tonioli and Craig Revel Horwood are paid a little over £100,000.
The Voice’s fourth judge Danny O’Donoghue, singer from little-known band The Script, was paid just over £100,000, but wants more parity with his colleagues next year.
Three BBC household names I’ve spoken to, who work on shows that attract more viewers than The Voice, are outraged over the judges’ big money deals. One raged: ‘How can the BBC justify paying that much money to four part-time judges who work a few hours a week on a show that struggled?
‘I’ve had to take a major pay cut and accept that I’ll probably never receive a pay increase again, even though I work on a successful show.’
Another said: ‘There are brilliant presenters who work full-time for the BBC who get less than half of the money paid out to The Voice judges. It’s not fair.’
The high salaries for the judges are believed to have been factored into The Voice’s £25 million two-year budget, although BBC insiders tell me the exact amounts are still being negotiated.
No live show for our Emmy hopes
British TV could have its most successful night ever at the Emmy Awards — TV’s Oscars — in Los Angeles on Sunday night. But you won’t be able to watch it here live.
Downton Abbey is up for no less than 16 awards, including Hugh Bonneville for Best Actor and Michelle Dockery (pictured) for Best Actress.
There are also nominations for BBC drama Sherlock and its stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman, as well as Damian Lewis for Homeland and Jared Harris for Mad Men.
Award nominated: Michelle Dockery, pictured left as Lady Mary, Jessica Brown Findlay as Lady Sybil and Joanne Froggatt as Anna in Downton Abbey
But no British channel is screening the awards live. Instead, 5USA will provide highlights on Monday night.
As she returns to the spotlight on Strictly Come Dancing, Tess Daly is already plotting her next TV project.
The 43-year-old is in discussions about launching a studio-based fashion magazine show.
Similar shows in the U.S. are a hit with female viewers and Tess says: ‘A lot of shows I get offered pale by comparison with Strictly, but I’m obsessed with fashion, so I really want to do something style-based next.’
Rehearsals have already begun on the live episode of Emmerdale to mark the ITV soap’s 40th anniversary.
‘All the cast are petrified about it,’ Gemma Oaten, who plays Rachel Breckle on the rural series, tells me.
‘There’s the potential for so much to go wrong because it is such a dramatic episode. I’ve read the script and it’s just perfect for such a big moment — there’s laughter and tears.’
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INSIDE THE BOX: Beeb fury over The Voice stars’ salaries