After months of speculation, Channel 10 has finally confirmed that celebrity chef and restaurateur Jamie Oliver will be joining the cast of MasterChef Australia in 2024.
On Thursday, the network announced that Oliver, along with long-term MasterChef star Andy Allen and former contestant Poh Ling Yeow, has signed on as a guest judge for the upcoming season. The new panel will also include food critic Sofia Levin and restauranteur Jean-Christophe Novell.
Filming for the new season has already commenced in Melbourne, and Oliver's two-week stint is set to be the longest appearance by any guest judge in the show's 14-year history.
This news comes after speculations that Oliver would replace Jock Zonfrillo, who sadly passed away in April, as a permanent judge on the show. However, those rumors turned out to be unfounded, and Channel 10 announced they would search for a replacement for Zonfrillo.
In the midst of the changes, Melissa Leong, another beloved judge, chose to exit MasterChef and launch her own spinoff series called Dessert Masters. Despite rumors of a feud between Leong, Allen, and Zonfrillo, Leong expressed nothing but love and respect for her former co-stars.
Dessert Masters has already gathered a strong following, with 451,000 viewers tuning in across major cities on Tuesday night. Melissa Leong, accompanied by celebrated pastry chef Amaury Guichon, continues to retain her fanbase and attract new support.
Fans can look forward to seeing Jamie Oliver's culinary expertise on MasterChef Australia in 2024. For now, the talented guest judge will be making history with the longest stint on the popular cooking competition show.