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The Masked Dancer set for major shake-up as Mo Gilligan exits series

The comedian's replacement for the new series has been revealed

the masked dancer
Eve Crosbie
Eve CrosbieTV & Film Writer
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The masked madness of ITV show The Masked Dancer is due to return for its second series later this year - but viewers can expect things to look a little different.

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It's been revealed that comedian Mo Gilligan will be stepping away from the series as he will be unavailable due to touring commitments. Instead, fellow panellists Jonathan Ross, Oti Mabuse and Davina McCall will be joined by none other than footballing legend Peter Crouch.

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Speaking about the exciting news, the former England striker said: "The show is a firm favourite in our household and when asked I jumped at the chance to take part. I am competitive and I'm currently scrolling through friends' socials looking for those tell-tale dance moves.

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He jokingly continued: "Another plus is by being on the panel my social media, family and friends won't be constantly speculating that I'm hiding behind one of the masks!"

peter crouch© Photo: Rex

The footballing legend will replace Mo Gilligan on the ITV show's panel

Meanwhile, Mo added: "I love being a part of the Masked Team so I'm gutted to be missing most of the series this year as I'll be working in the US. But I've got the perfect sub to take my place. A legend on and off the pitch and one of the nicest guys in the industry, Crouchy knows a thing or two about fancy footwork, we've got this!"

masked singer panel© Photo: ITV

Mo will make a comeback for a surprise appearance during the new series

However, fans needn't despair as the comedian will make a comeback for a surprise appearance at one point during the new series. On top of that, the panel will also be joined by some very special guest panellists throughout the show's run. Previous guest panellists have included Dame Joan Collins, Olly Alexander, Matt Lucas and Sharon Osbourne.

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The new series - which does not yet have an air date - will see 12 new celebrities take to the dancefloor while donning elaborate costumes in a bid to wow the panel and confuse them with their moves.

Last series, viewers saw Olympic gymnast Louis Smith storm to victory dressed as the wonderfully outlandish Car Wash. Fellow series one contestants included Zoe Ball, Craig Revel Horwood, Kelly Brook and Christopher Dean.

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