A joint statement from Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc said: “We were very shocked and saddened to learn yesterday evening that ‘Bake Off’ will be moving from its home.
“We made no secret of our desire for the show to remain where it was….We’re not going with the dough.”
The statement continued: “The BBC nurtured the show from its infancy and helped give it its distinctive warmth and charm, growing it from an audience of 2 million to nearly 15 million at its peak.”
A spokesperson for the show’s creators, Love Production, said: “We would like to thank Mel and Sue for bringing their own unique humor to the [competition] tent over the past years and we respect their decision not to be part of the ‘Bake Off’ team on Channel 4.”
All eyes will now turn to the show’s judges, Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood, to see if they’ll stay or follow Giedroyc and Perkins out the door.
The 2012 winner of “Bake Off,” John Whaite, said the show would suffer without Giedroyc, Perkins, Berry and Hollywood on board. “It wouldn’t be the same — those four have made it the show it is… If they jump ship ‘Bake Off’ has had its day,” he told “Good Morning Britain.”
After more than a year of negotiations, the BBC is reported to have offered £15 million ($19.8 million) a year for the show, but Love Productions wanted £25 million ($32.9 million) — four times its existing deal. Channel 4 then stepped in with a rival bid, which is for a three-year deal, comprising 40 hours of programming a year. Commercial network ITV and streaming platform Netflix are understood to have also submitted bids.
The struggles of BBC’s re-booted version of “Top Gear,” with Chris Evans and Matt LeBlanc as hosts replacing Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May, has emphasized the importance of on-screen talent.