entertainment

Lorraine Kelly, Sheridan Smith, MNEK and more announced as RPDR UK guest judges

Elizabeth Hurley and Jourdan Dunn have also been confirmed!

2020-12-17

Words: Jamie Tabberer; pictures: Imogen Reid (BBC)/Andy Hughes/@balugamedia

Lorraine Kelly, Sheridan Smith, MNEK, Elizabeth Hurley and Jourdan Dunn have all been confirmed as guest judges on the next series of RuPaul's Drag Race UK.

The news follows this week's confirmation of series two's start date - it's heading to BBC iPlayer at 7pm on Thursday 14 January - and our first look at the queens of 2021.

The Royals star Elizabeth is set for the opening episode of the series, while West End icon Sheridan will appear later in the run, on the music and dance-themed episode.

 
 
 
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TV queen Lorraine is also headed for the main judging panel (after taking part in Snatch Game last year), as is MNEK.

Jourdan, meanwhile, will "lend her catwalk expertise to the queens, imparting the knowledge she’s gained from decades in the industry, as the queens werk the runway," according to a BBC rep.

Lorraine, Sheridan et al are not the only big names lending RuPaul,  Michelle Visage, Graham Norton and Alan Carr a hand next year. The Vicar of Dibley star Dawn French has already said she's guest judging, and it was this week reported the TOWIE's Gemma Collins will be appearing in the Snatch Game episode.

Elizabeth Hurley: "My family would have disowned me if I hadn't said yes"

How was your time on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK?

I had a great time being a guest judge on the first episode. I really enjoyed seeing all these girls working so hard. There are a lot of beautiful costumes, hard work and a lot of talent.

Why did you want to take part in the show?

My whole family is obsessed with the show and would have disowned me if I hadn’t said yes to being a judge. I am in awe of RuPaul and couldn’t take my eyes off him.

What are you like as a judge?

I like the ladies to look magnificent and make me laugh, so anyone who achieved that got my vote.

If you could describe your day on set in a word….?

Hysterical.

What would your drag name be?

Betty Bang Bang.

Lorraine Kelly OBE: "Ru smells divine!"

Why do you love Drag Race?

It’s funny, sassy and hugely entertaining but also has real heart. Barriers come crashing down and we all learn to love each other a little more. 

How was it to be back on set?

I felt like I’d just crawled out of the telly. It’s my favourite show in the world and I’ve actually been a judge on it!

It was an absolute joy to be there - to meet Ru, to meet Michelle again, and Alan. And the queens were just incredible. I felt as if I were in a gorgeous Ru bubble all day and all was right with the world. And I was sitting beside RuPaul, who smells divine! 

What can we expect for series two?

Let’s just say that if I’m ever struck down there are some queens who could easily step into my high heels and present my show.

 

Sheridan Smith: "I felt like I'd won the competition"

How was your day on set?          

Amazing! I am such a superfan! I’m shaking! Ru was sat next to me! And Michelle Visage! And Alan Carr! It’s been amazing. The queens are fabulous. I had the best day. I felt like I’d won a competition.

What’s your judging style?

Overexcited! I just love every one of the drag queens… they are all fabulous!

What would your drag name be?

Aunty Bac.

What should we look out for in your episode?

My fangirling and my massive pregnant belly!

MNEK: "My judging style is Mariah on Americal Idol"

Why did you want to take part in the show?

I’m a fan of Drag Race, as is most of the gay community. It’s literally our version of sports or something. I was on it last year, as a vocal coach and I loved being a part of it. So to be asked to judge this year, I was so so, so excited.

Why should we watch your episode?

I will say, simply because it highlights the musical talent/star quality of the queens. And duh, because I’m on it!

What should we look out for?

Talent, fierceness and lewks!

What’s your judging style?

Think Mariah on American Idol.

Jourdan Dunn: "I've watched the show from the beginning"

What was it like being on set?

I have to say this has been a dream come true. I’ve watched this show from the beginning until now… and I’m a judge! It’s surreal. On set I was looking around like a little schoolgirl – I can’t believe I was there!

What do you love about Drag Race?

It puts the biggest smile on my face and it just warms my heart seeing the queens come together and be their true, authentic selves. Yeah, I feel what it stands for – unity and being who you wanna be and I’m here for It.

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