Insiders close to the BBC have shut down rumours that some of the Strictly Come Dancing contestants are being favoured over other celebrities on the show. 

Most of the attention has been on Amanda Abbington after she announced on Monday (October 23) that she would be quitting Strictly.

On an episode of Strictly: It Takes Two today (Monday, October 23) presenter Fleur East briefly shared a statement given by the show.

The statement said: "Amanda Abbington is unable to continue in Strictly Come Dancing and has decided to withdraw from the competition.

"The show wishes her all the best for the future".

But after Sunday's dance-off which saw Eddie Kadi and his partner Karen Hauer eliminated from Strictly 2023 there have been a "few eyebrows raised backstage" surrounding the treatment of certain celebrities, including Zara McDermott and Bobby Brazier, compared to others, The Sun reported.

Claims certain celebrities are getting preferential treatment on Strictly Come Dancing

Zara McDermott, and professional partner Graziano di Prima, avoided elimination for a third time this week after the judges - Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse, Craig Revel Horwood and Anton Du Beke - voted to keep her on the show and eliminate Eddie Kadi. 

The decision was not received well by fans with many taking to social media saying McDermott should have been eliminated instead. 

One fan, on a Strictly Come Dancing Instagram post, said: "Wrong decision. Zara looked so stiff im sorry. It looked like she was getting dragged across the dance floor.

"Eddie danced and i actually enjoyed his performance he should of stayed in. What more can Zara offer cause i don’t see it?"

Another added: "how in the hell did zara win over eddie, she is stiff as hell, can’t point her feet, she’s done the same dance twice & looks awkward everytime, eddie enjoyed hiself and actually tried."

It seems even those backstage are starting to think some of the celebrity contestants are being favoured by the show, according to The Sun. 

The news outlet reported the favouritism was aimed at McDermott and EastEnders' Bobby Brazzier as they both have deals with the BBC outside of Strictly.

A show insider, speaking to The Sun, said: “Bobby and Zara are very much seen as ‘BBC favourites’ by their Strictly co-stars.

“After she was saved there were more than a few eyebrows raised backstage.”

The insider added: “Bobby and Zara are both big deals for the BBC. There are rumours of an ‘agenda’ to further them both on the show.

"There seems to be an element of jealousy that Zara is through to another week. She is very much a golden girl for the BBC.

"And by giving Bobby a whirl on Strictly they can gauge his popularity outside the soap.”

BBC shuts down rumours of favouritism on Strictly Come Dancing

Despite the reports of favouritism, reported by The Sun, sources close to the BBC and Strictly Come Dancing have told The Mirror it is not true. 

A Strictly source said: "All of the judges are hugely experienced individuals who judge on dance and dance alone in the main show and in the dance offs.

"Any conspiracy theories suggesting otherwise are simply untrue."

Strictly Come Dancing airs on Saturdays and Sundays on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.