Strictly Come Dancing 2014: EastEnders star Jake Wood to waltz through?

Jake Wood and Janette Manrara [Picture: BBC / Kieron McCarron]

Jake Wood and Janette Manrara [Picture: BBC / Kieron McCarron] - Credit: BBC/Kieron McCarron

The 2014 Strictly Come Dancing contestants, including Tewin talent Jake Wood, will be bringing Hollywood glitz, glamour and razzmatazz to the ballroom tonight (Saturday) as they try to avoid the dreaded dance-off in Movie Week.

Strictly judges Craig Revel Horwood, Darcey Bussell, Len Goodman and Bruno Tonioli [Picture: BBC / K

Strictly judges Craig Revel Horwood, Darcey Bussell, Len Goodman and Bruno Tonioli [Picture: BBC / Kieron McCarron] - Credit: BBC/Kieron McCarron

If you thought Strictly 2014 couldn’t get any more sparkly – then think again. The movies come to the Strictly studios this evening, with the 14 remaining celebrities performing routines inspired by some of the greatest films of all time.

After Gregg Wallace was eliminated from the BBC One show last Sunday, the remaining stars in the competition are Alison Hammond, Caroline Flack, Frankie Bridge, Jake Wood, Jennifer Gibney, Judy Murray, Mark Wright, Pixie Lott, Scott Mills, Simon Webbe, Steve Backshall, Sunetra Sarker, Thom Evans and Tim Wonnacott.

EastEnders actor Jake Wood will be one to watch, after impressing the judges on the opening two weeks of the live shows, and emerging as an early front-runner for the Glitterball trophy.

Tonight Jake and professional Janette Manrara will be waltzing to the ‘Godfather Waltz’ from the unforgettable mobster flick The Godfather.


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The professional dancers will first set the Tinseltown mood with a spectacular performance of There’s No Business Like Showbusiness.

Then, in a night of Hollywood glamour, the dancing duos will take to the ballroom floor and perform routines inspired by blockbuster movies – from action to romance and thriller to comedy.

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And, for one week only, there’s a very special guest judge in Donny Osmond.

Hosted by Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman, the Strictly couples must impress judges Darcey Bussell, Len Goodman, Craig Revel Horwood, Bruno Tonioli and Donny in a bid to stay in the competition.

Hertfordshire-based actor Jake Wood certainly did that last week with his sizzling salsa to Mambo No 5.

The snake-hipped TV star from Tewin, who plays bad boy Max Branning in the BBC One soap, wowed the Strictly judges with the hottest salsa of last Saturday’s live show.

Jake and professional dance partner scored three nines from the panel and totalled a joint series high of 35 points out of 40.

Their intricate routine had the audience on their feet and left the judges gobsmacked with its intensity.

Craig Revel Horwood, who gave it an eight, said that Jake’s hip action could “crack coconuts”, while fellow judge Darcey Bussell stated it “was one of the best salsa performances I’ve seen in a long time”.

Training for the waltz, however, has been much tougher this week.

Taking to Twitter, Janette Manrara tweeted yesterday (Friday): “Well, it’s here again! How quick did that week go? Very different week for @mrjakedwood & I compared to last week! Fingers crossed!”

Jake had earlier in the week tweeted: “Wish we could Salsa every week @JManrara

“This Saturday is going to be TOUGH!! Bring it on though, I’m ready for the challenges ahead.”

And he quashed speculation that he had had dance lessons before signing up for Strictly.

On Tuesday, Jake (@mrjakedwood) tweeted: “Just to clarify I have never had a dance lesson in my life. Ever. Fact #StrictlyComeDancing #HisNameIsJake”

Speaking before the series began, the family man said: “I’m doing it for all the dads out there and you never know, there’s always a chance of being the first Walford resident to take home the glitterball... Bring it on!”

Tonight’s songs and dances are:

* Alison Hammond and Aljaž Skorjanec will be Jiving to Kenny Loggin’s ‘Footloose’ from the film of the same name.

* Caroline Flack and Pasha Kovalev will perform the Rumba to Aerosmith’s ‘I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing’ from ‘Armageddon’.

* Frankie Bridge and Kevin Clifton will dance the Paso Doble to ‘America’ from the Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim musical ‘West Side Story’.

* Jake Wood and Janette Manrara are Waltzing to the ‘Godfather Waltz’ by Nina Rota from ‘The Godfather’.

* Jennifer Gibney and Tristan MacManus will perform the Foxtrot to Abba’s ‘Mamma Mia’ from the film of the same name.

* Judy Murray and Anton du Beke will be Quickstepping to ‘Don’t Rain on My Parade’ originally sung by Barbra Streisand in the film ‘Funny Girl’.

* Mark Wright and Karen Hauer are performing the Paso Doble to the John Williams penned theme from ‘Superman’.

* Pixie Lott and Trent Whiddon will Quickstep to ‘Be Our Guest’ from Disney’s ‘Beauty and the Beast’.

* Scott Mills and Joanne Clifton will dance the Samba to ‘Under the Sea’ from Disney classic ‘The Little Mermaid’.

* Simon Webbe and Kristina Rihanoff will perform the Rumba to Berlin’s ‘Take My Breath Away’ from the film ‘Top Gun’.

* Steve Backshall and Ola Jordan will be Quickstepping to ‘I Wanna Be Like You’ from Disney’s ‘Jungle Book’.

* Sunetra Sarker and Brendan Cole are performing the American Smooth to ‘The Way You Look Tonight’, originally sung by Fred Astaire in ‘Swing Time’.

* Tim Wonnacott and Natalie Lowe will dance the Charleston to ‘Money, Money’ from the Bob Fosse musical ‘Cabaret’.

*Thom Evans and Iveta Lukosiute will also perform the Charleston to ‘New York, New York’ from the soundtrack of the Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra musical ‘On The Town’.

* Strictly Come Dancing starts at 6.30pm on BBC One.

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