Kevin Clifton addresses ‘ridiculous’ choice in return to Strictly six months after leaving

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Kevin Clifton, 37, and Stacey Dooley, 33, who are now in a relationship, won Strictly Come Dancing in 2018. He announced he had left the BBC show after seven years back in March. Tonight, Kevin returned to the programme and relived the moment he performed a Despicable Me-themed Jive with Stacey dressed as minions.

For me it was an immediate no.

Kevin Clifton

The professional dancer told viewers he wasn’t keen on the idea at first after previously pitching a Tomb Raider-themed song instead, but went on to love the energetic routine.

At the time, the dancing duo scored 32 out of 40 points from judges; Craig Revel Horwood, Darcey Bussell, Shirley Ballas and Bruno Tonioli.

Reflecting on the performance, Kevin told viewers: “I’ve had some pretty out-there movie week ideas, but one of the craziest has to be the minions.”

He went on to explain: “Initially, I had a completely different idea for that week.

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“When I spoke to the dance team and they said, ‘How about doing minions?’ For me it was an immediate no.

“I wasn’t on board and then I set about asking everyone, ‘What do you think, my idea or the minions idea’, and everyone said, ‘Minions’.

“We were covered head to toe in yellow wearing those ridiculous goggles and denim outfits, I mean when else do you get to do that?”

Kevin went on to say he believes the idea paid off as they didn’t take themselves too seriously.

The dancer added: “I think sometimes when you watch Strictly, you sometimes just want to watch someone not taking themselves too seriously.

“So to see me and Stace completely yellow and looking ridiculous, I think everyone just enjoyed that.”

Judge Craig also shared his thoughts about the routine during the episode.

He admitted he thought the pair’s dance was going to be “a disaster” at first, but backtracking on his initial thoughts, he added: “How wrong was I?”

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Kevin won the main show for the first time with Stacey in 2018. He left the show earlier this year to focus on other work commitments.

As part of a lengthy statement at the time, he said: “I want to leave on a high and have therefore decided the time has come to move on and focus on other areas of my life and career.

“I want to thank all of the pros for inspiring me every day as well as all of my celebrity partners,” he added.

“The whole team behind the scenes have always made the Strictly family what it is and the loveliest show to work for.”

Following his departure from the show, AJ Pritchard also announced he had decided to leave.

This year, the remaining pros will return for the new series of the show next month.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the series will be shorter than usual and will start at a later date.

Strictly: The Best of Movies is available on BBC iPlayer.

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