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Thursday, 26 April, 2001, 17:28 GMT 18:28 UK
Ant and Dec go primetime
Ant and Dec
SM:TV was a real career boost
TV presenters Ant and Dec are to front a new Saturday primetime ITV show from May.

As it stands Slap Bang is six one hour shows featuring celebrity guests, musical items and games, but details are as yet unconfirmed.

The pair - Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly - have said for some time that they wanted to move into mainstream programming.

"This show will be aimed at everybody," said a spokesman for Slap Bang.

Ant and Dec
The duo made their first move into prime-time with Friends Like These
"It's an early evening slot and will be a family show."

Ant and Dec's Secret Camera Show on ITV was recently criticised by the Independent Television Commission after featuring partly-masked nudity.

Unbeatable

Ant and Dec quit their hit Saturday evening BBC show Friends Like These to sign an exclusive deal with ITV last year.

They front the music show CD:UK and SM:TV live, which became the most popular children's programme on Saturday Mornings.

Both shows are made by Blaze Television, who will also produce Slap Bang.

Since its launch in 1998, its ratings have soared, overtaking the once unbeatable Live and Kicking on BBC One.

Ant and Dec first found fame with BBC children's drama series Byker Grove.

They left the show in 1993 to concentrate on their fledging pop career under the name PJ & Duncan.

They had 14 hits, three multi-platinum albums and two sell-out tours.

They continued with music but began developing a new TV career, first with their Bafta-winning show Ant and Dec on BBC One.

It was followed by Ant and Dec Unzipped for Channel 4 in 1997, resulting in a second Bafta.

Friends Like These marked their first major step into prime-time broadcasting and started in February 2000.

See also:

08 Sep 00 | Entertainment
Live & Kicking gets new look
07 Nov 00 | Entertainment
Ant and Dec leave BBC
12 Nov 00 | Entertainment
Children's favourites honoured
19 Mar 01 | TV and Radio
Ant and Dec rapped over nudity
21 Nov 00 | Entertainment
Ant and Dec plan SM:TV swansong
10 Nov 00 | Entertainment
Comedy stars fight it out
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