Gogglebox stars whove quit for bigger things – from Queen of the Jungle to budding MP

During its iconic 10 years on our screens, Channel 4 telly watching series Gogglebox has delighted fans week after week when its cheeky band of armchair critics have weighed in on the best and worst of British telly.

From witty one liners to over the top anecdotes, there’s been no shortage of memorable moments on the show, with several of the families and stars taking part even being propelled into the spotlight to launch careers far beyond their humble beginnings at home in their livings rooms.

In fact, Gogglebox has quite the reputation for spring boarding the careers of it’s participants, with the stars going on to feature in everything from Dancing on Ice and Celebrity Big Brother, right through to one star even ending up in the Cabinet Office!

Here, we take a closer look at the Gogglebox stars that have quit the show for bigger things.

Scarlett Moffatt

It wouldn’t be a Gogglebox article without mentioning Scarlett Moffatt, the charming and bubbly star who first found fame on the show back in 2014, when she appeared alongside her parents to review the latest shows to hit our screens.

Instantly becoming a hit with fans, Scarlett soon found her popularity and stardom growing, with her rapidly becoming one of the must-watch stars on the show.

However, after two years on our screens, Scarlett decided to step away from Gogglebox as she had been invited to participate in I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! – a series that she went on to win.

At the time of her departure, Channel 4 said: “Scarlett Moffatt is going in to I’m a Celebrity and will no longer participate in this series of Gogglebox.

“The show’s producers have not had any conversations with Scarlett about leaving or returning to Gogglebox after her stint in the Jungle.

“The Moffatts have been excellent contributors to Gogglebox, and we are very grateful for all they have given to the show.”

After being crowned the Queen of the Jungle, Scarlett’s career really took off, with a number of presenting roles and appearances following, including on I’m a Celebrity’s spin off show, Extra Camp.

She has also been a team captain on the panel gameshow Celeb Ability since 2019 and in 2023 she welcomed her first child, a little boy, with boyfriend Scott Dobinson.

Stephen Lustig-Webb

One of the most recent stars to bid farewell to Gogglebox, is OG cast member, Stephen Webb, who had starred on every single series of the show since it’s inception, until his departure in September 2023.

Stephen, along with his husband Daniel Lustig, shared the news that they would no longer be participating in the show on social media, when Stephen told fans: “We feel the time is right to move on and explore other opportunities. We would both like to thank Channel 4 and Studio Lambert for letting us be part of this amazing, funny and heartwarming show.”

He then added: “We are extremely thankful to the cast and crew, or Gogglebox family as we call them, and of course the fans, thank you for all of your love & support over the years.”

Interestingly, within less than a month, it was then revealed that Stephen wouldn’t be away from our TV screens for too long, as he had signed up to take part in the January 2024 series of Dancing on Ice.

Speaking about his upcoming appearance on an episode of Lorraine, Stephen told viewers at home: "The last time I was on the ice I think I was 14 (years old) so almost 40 years ago. I have been back on the ice since just for a quick spin around, I didn't fall over so that was a good thing!"

He then continued: ”I think it is one of the biggest challenges on TV, it's a long job and I just wanted to get my teeth into something," before adding: "I’ve got a new appreciation for skating. I can see how truly difficult it is. From the comfort of my sofa I was probably a little too judgy, I didn’t realise how hard it is!"

Josh Tapper

While many former Gogglebox stars have gone on to bigger and brighter things in the entertainment industry, one former participant, Josh Tapper decided to make a complete career U-turn and go into politics following his time on the show.

Josh famously starred on the show with his family for five years between 2013 and 2018, at which point he waved goodbye to his TV days and instead took on a job in the Cabinet Office!

Speaking about his new job at the time, Josh preciously told The Mirror: “I want to move away from that and the focus is now very much on my job. Of course, I miss it and sitting on the couch watching TV. “

“But I am more focused on my future … it’s a more secure path. I don’t think any ministers recognise me but the civil servants do. It took them a while to mention it – a total of about two days!”

And it appears his ambitions don’t just stop there, as the star later went on to reveal his intention to run as a Labour MP for his home constituency of Chipping Barnet, in 2022!

Taking to Twitter to plug his campaign, Josh wrote: "Politics is about people. Our community taught me to work hard, stand up for others, give back and fight for what you believe in.

“Theresa Villiers doesn't fight for the change we need. That's why I'm standing to be the first Labour MP for Chipping Barnet.”

Tom Malone Jr

When many people think of Gogglebox families, one of the most famous to spring to mind is the Malone family, headed up by mum Julie, dad Tom and brother Shaun.

But one star who previously carved a name for himself on the show up until 2021, is Tom Malone Jr, who famously bid farewell to the sofa in order to pursue other projects.

Speaking about his departure at the time, Tom said: “So after 6 and a half years it’s finally time to put down the remote, and to say goodbye to Gogglebox.

“I’ve loved every minute and I’m eternally grateful to Channel 4 and Studio Lambert for allowing me to be a part of the show. But new opportunities are knocking on the door and it’s time to explore them.”

Since leaving the show, Tom has embarked on a number of exciting projects, in particular in his day job as a dancer and choreographer, which has seen him perform with a number of high profile names over the years, including the likes of The Black Eyed Peas, Rita Ora and Wiley.

He even had his very own section at the Jingle Bell Ball in 2022 to show off his dance crew’s phenomenal skills in aid of a good cause!

Mica & Marcus

In December 2022, Marcus Luther and Mica Ven announced that they were stepping down from Gogglebox after four enjoyable years on the show.

Speaking to their fans about their departure the couple said: “We’ve had so much fun with you all tuning in at home and the hardworking Gogglebox crews, but it’s time to put down the remote and see what else God has in store for us.”

Interestingly, neither Mica nor Marcus gave any hint to their future plans, but the couple did appear on BBC’s Pointless a few months later, in what several fans had hoped would be the start of numerous other TV appearances over the next few years.

George Gilbey

Another star that left Gogglebox to pursue other work in the bright and shining world of show business, is George Gilbey who famously departed in 2014 to star on Celebrity Big Brother.

Originally, George had intended to return to Gogglebox following his time on the series, in order to continue providing his irreverent take on the latest TV shows alongside his parents Pete and Linda.

However, after winning a place on CBB, George was informed by producers that he would no longer be able to return to Gogglebox.

Despite the firm stance from show producers, George and his family were able to return to Gogglebox in 2016 where they continued to be a firm favourite until 2018 when George once again left the show, leaving Pete and Linda to continue in his absence.

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