Great Britain

Tom Fletcher: Who is the Strictly Come Dancing 2021 contestant and what is he famous for?

McFly star Tom Fletcher is one of the celebrity contestants taking part in this year’s series of Strictly Come Dancing.

Born on 17 July, 1985, Fletcher was raised in Harrow, north-west London, and attended the prestigious Sylvia Young Theatre School. It was there, aged 13, that he met his future wife Giovanna Falcone, whom he married in 2012.

They have three children together, sons Buzz (aged seven), Buddy (aged five), and Max (aged two).

When he was 10 years old, Fletcher starred in a production of Oliver! at the London Palladium.

The 36-year-old musician rose to greater fame as a member of the popular boyband McFly, who formed in 2003, along with bandmates Dougie Poynter, Danny Jones and Harry Judd.

Fletcher came up with the name after being inspired by the main character, Marty McFly, from his favourite film Back to the Future.

Fletcher originally auditioned to be in the band Busted, but lost out to Charlie Simpson after label Island Records decided they wanted Busted to be a trio, not a four-piece. However, the two bands have been close for years, with McFly serving as the support act for Busted during their 2004 tour.

McFly's (L-R) Dougie Poynter, Danny Jones, Harry Judd and Tom Fletcher in 2016

Their debut album, Room on the Third Floor, charted at No 1 in the UK, followed by 2005’s Wonderland, which made McFly the youngest-ever band to have topped the UK charts twice.

They have a total of seven UK No 1 singles, while all six of their albums have made the UK Top 10. Among their biggest hits are “5 Colours in Her Hair”, “That Girl”, “All About You” and “I’ll Be OK”. Their latest album Young Dumb Thrills, was released in November last year and charted at No 2 in the UK.

Outside of McFly’s success, Fletcher has also contributed his songwriting talents to hit songs for Busted, One Direction and 5 Seconds of Summer.

In 2012, he released his first children’s book, the best-selling The Dinosaur that Pooped Christmas, which was written with his McFly bandmate Poynter. A sequel, The Dinosaur that Pooped a Planet, was released in 2013. Fletcher has also published the children’s novel, The Christmasauraus, and a sequel, The Christmasaurus and the Winter Witch.

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Strictly is by no means Fletcher’s first foray into the world of reality TV. He cameoed as a gorilla in costume when his bandmate Poynter appeared on I’m a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! in 2011, and was there to greet Poynter on the red carpet when he won the series.

He has also taken part in celebrity episodes of The Cube, All Star Family Fortunes, All Star Mr and Mrs, and Celebrity Deal or No Deal, all for charity. His wife, Giovanna, is an author, actor, vlogger and presenter who won I’m a Celebrity in 2020.

Fletcher and his wife experienced a minor controversy earlier this year after it emerged that they had used the government’s scheme to furlough an employee, despite their estimated joint worth of £8m.

The couple issued an apology after reports claimed they had received up to £30,000 from the scheme. They denied the figure was correct but called their use of the money a “huge error of judgement”.

“Although it was a time of great uncertainty, we clearly should have thought more about the situation and funded it ourselves,” they said in a joint statement.

“It was a huge error of judgement and a mistake we wholeheartedly take responsibility for and we have paid the full amount back.”

Fletcher is competing against fellow Strictly contestants including comedian Robert Webb, children’s TV entertainer Rhys Stephenson, journalist Dan Walker, actor Greg Wise and EastEnders star Nina Wadia. Read the full line-up here.

Strictly Come Dancing airs on Saturday nights on BBC One.

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