Inside Strictly’s most explosive feuds from bitter backstage clash to the contestant who ‘cried every day’ | The Sun

STRICTLY Come Dancing is back on-screen filled with a host of famous faces and their professional partners bidding for the iconic Glitter Ball trophy.

Yet away from the sequins, fake tan and fancy footwork there's a less shiny side to the BBC One show.

Famed for the Strictly Come Dancing curse – where sexy routines and long hours has led to a handful of celebrity couples splitting up – there's also been backstage feuds, bust-ups and unhappy partners, too.

Here we take a look at the biggest Strictly Come Dancing spats.

Laura Whitmore and Giovanni Pernice

Back in 2016, The Sun was first to report how Irish broadcaster Laura, 38, and the Italian pro, 33, were embroiled in a "toxic feud" during training.

Some even went as far as to say the MTV anchor "hated" her partner's "rudeness", with a source telling us: “The atmosphere between Laura and Gio was never that great, but it’s now turned toxic.

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“They clashed during rehearsals as Laura got increasingly agitated with Gio’s tone and general rudeness.

“They pulled it together for the live shows but behind the scenes it was a different story."

Later, Laura told the HuffPost she "cried every day" and was "broken physically and mentally."

Another source added: “Gio got frustrated with Laura over-analysing everything and not playing the PR game.

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“She didn’t like filming videos and didn’t promote their pairing like other couples did, which is vital to win votes.”

Their bad feeling worsened after they were voted off the show after seven weeks.

Fern Britton and Artem Chigvintsev

Former This Morning anchor Fern Britton clashed with Artem Chigvintsev, 41 – who no longer stars on Strictly – back in 2012.

The pair, who danced a sexy salsa with Fern, 66, donning a pink sequin dress, reached week six of the competition.

Yet she revealed their frosty relationship in a candid chat – with the Russian pro refuting the claims.

Back in 2015, she claimed Artem used to “kick” and “shove” her during rehearsals.

She told The Times: “He was like: ‘Shut your face. Go home before I kill you.'

“I would say, ‘Oh please just kill me, it would be easier.'

"Or what was his other one? ‘If you go for a cup of tea now, I will blow off like an atomic bomb.’ I thought, well I won’t correct him on that one.”

Artem denied the claims, insisting he treated Fern with “respect and genuine care."

He also told how her shocking views didn’t reflect “any situation” he recognised.

Lulu and Brendan Cole

Bold Aussie Brendan, 47 – who was sacked from Strictly in 2018 – didn't mince his words when it came to partnering with the pop queen in 2011.

He branded the Shout hitmaker, 74, "blooming awful" in an analysis of their time together.

Brendan told the Loose Women panel Lulu was “not a particularly nice person."

He then quipped: "But she felt the same about me, so it’s alright."

For her part, Lulu appeared to agree.

She previously stated: ""I worked with someone [on Strictly] with whom I wasn’t really compatible, so that was very hard."

Meanwhile, Brendan – who had been on Strictly since the show started in 2004 – confirmed five years ago that his contract with the BBC had not been renewed and that he would no longer be a part of the TV talent series.

Michelle Visage and Giovanni Pernice

Drag Race star Michelle and Giovanni were said to have thrown Strictly into "chaos" back in 2019.

At the time, sources told The Sun that the atmosphere off-screen was tense due to an on-going feud.

A string of clashes in training led to a strained relationship with Michelle, 54, and Giovanni leading to fears it would affect her chances of winning.

A source said: “Michelle has become quite unhappy at times. She has a fiery relationship with Giovanni. Both are very strong characters and they’ve both had a lot to say. He’s probably not used to a partner being quite so in control and calling the shots.”

In the end, Michelle didn't triumph – instead finishing eighth.

Gregg Wallace and Aliona Vilani

MasterChef judge Gregg Wallace, 58, had a super-short Strictly Come Dancing stay – and was booted off in the first week back in 2014.

Gregg – who performed a routine in a chef's outfit – was quick to point the finger at Russian pro Aliona Vilani, 39, who is now no longer on the series.


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He took a bitter jibe at the dancer and said: "I love dancing, but if I were paired with somebody who liked me then I would have done better."

Yet the spat must have spurred her on as the following year, she lifted the Glitter Ball with The Wanted star Jay McGuinness before quitting the show completely.

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