Stephen Mulhern smiling and Ant McPartlin looking up

Celebrity Catchphrase’s Stephen Mulhern proud over ‘brother’ Ant McPartlin’s recovery from addiction

Their friendship goes way back

Host of Celebrity Catchphrase Stephen Mulhern shared some heartwarming words when his friend Ant McPartlin was struggling with addiction.

Back in 2018, Ant was charged with drink-driving and was banned from driving for 20 months. He was also fined a hefty £86,000 and checked into rehab for treatment. In August of that year, Ant revealed he would be taking a break from work and wouldn’t be returning until the following year.

“My recovery is going very well and for that to continue having spoken to Dec and ITV, I have made the decision to take the rest of the year off,” he said in a statement. Ant returned to work in January 2019.

Ant McPartlin looking up
Ant went to rehab after he was charged with drink-driving (Credit: Cover Images)

Catchphrase host Stephen Mulhern: ‘It’s like your brother has been away for a long time’

In a 2019 interview with The Sun, Stephen explained that he and Ant had been friends for many years.

“We met when we were all doing kids’ TV and now we live within five minutes of each other,” he said.

When asked what it was like having Ant back at work, Stephen said it was “amazing.”

He continued: “It’s like your brother has been away for a long time and now the family are back together. Ant and Dec are a double act and when you see them together, they spark off each other. Ant is on top form.”

Stephen Mulhern smiling
Stephen got his big break with the little help of Ant (Credit: Cover Images)

Stephen got his big break with help from Ant

Over the years, Stephen has worked alongside Ant & Dec on shows such as Saturday Night Takeaway and Britain’s Got More Talent. However, their friendship goes way back.

In an interview with The Sunday Express, Stephen revealed how Ant helped give Stephen his big break.

“A long time ago, I was in a room with Ant and Dec, and one of the big telly bosses came in,” he explained.

“At the time they were riding high, massively successful, and I was just plodding along. I saw my chance and said to Ant, ‘When the boss comes over, can you ask me to do a trick?'”

Ant did exactly what he asked, as Stephen recalled: “I reply something like, ‘Oh what? Really? I’m off duty… Fine, go on then, let me have a go’ in a very nonchalant manner, but of course then do the trick.”

The rest was history!

Read more: In For A Penny’s Stephen Mulhern on horrific bullying ordeal: ‘I was too scared to move – it’s always stayed with me’

Celebrity Catchphrase airs today (June 1) from 5.30pm on ITV1.

Stephen Mulhern's Undercover Panto Prank Part 1 -  Saturday Night Takeaway

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Fabio Magnocavallo
Freelance Writer