Emma Jane Willis (née Griffiths; born 20 March 1976) is a British television presenter and former model, best known for her current television and radio work with Channel 5, BBC, ITV and Heart FM.
Willis first rose to fame in 2002 when she began presenting on MTV UK, but in recent years she has presented various programmes for ITV including This Morning and Loose Women. She also currently presents the ITV2 dating show Girlfriends and the Sunday breakfast show on Heart FM alongside Stephen Mulhern.
After co-hosting Big Brother’s Little Brother for a time on Channel 4, it was confirmed in 2011 that Emma would be returning to the revived Channel 5 series, presenting spin-off show Big Brother’s Bit on the Side for two series from 2011 until 2013, whilst Brian Dowling hosted the main show. On 13 March 2013 it was reported that Brian Dowling would be axed from Big Brother, with Willis taking over from him in 2013.
Since 27 October 2013, Willis has co-presented the ITV game show Prize Island, with Alexander Armstong and since January 2014, she has co-presented the BBC One talent show series The Voice UK, alongside Marvin Humes. They began hosting the show from the third series.
Willis was born in Birmingham, England, and grew up in nearby Sutton Coldfield. She has an older sister. Willis attended John Willmott School in Sutton Coldfield. Willis began modelling at the age of 17, and during her career has worked for magazines, retailers, and companies such as Marie Claire, Elle, Vogue, GAP and Chanel.
Willis got her first big break presenting on MTV in 2002 before presenting various other shows including guest hosting for shows such as CD:UK, This Morning and Loose Women.
In 2007, Willis presented ITV2 spin-off series I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! NOW! alongside her husband Matt before departing in 2008.
In September 2012, Willis became a permanent presenter on This Morning, presenting segments in The Hub, taking over from Coleen Nolan. She is also a stand-in presenter on the main show when Holly Willoughby or Ruth Langsford are absent.
“Working with Phillip, Holly, Eamonn and Ruth has been nothing but a pleasure, so knowing I will officially be part of the family from October is really exciting. I can’t wait to get cracking” – Emma Willis
In addition to this, Willis began hosting the ITV2 show Girlfriends in 2012. The show returned on 14 August 2013 for a second series.
On 16 November 2012, Willis was drafted in to guest anchor Loose Women, she has since presented on several occasions as a stand-in presenter. She covered for Carol Vorderman after she broke her nose in April 2013.
Emma is to present new ITV game show Prize Island in 2013, alongside Alexander Armstrong, it was rumoured that the show has been axed before it has began, this was later denied and began airing on 27 October 2013.
On 20 November 2013, Emma guest presented the teatime chat show The Paul O’Grady Show, whilst O’Grady was away. She was one of five presenters covering for him that week.
On 2 July 2015, it was announced that Willis would present a new three-part series for ITV called What Would Be Your Miracle, about modern miracles. The series began on 28 April 2016.
In 2017, The Voice UK will move from BBC One to ITV. It was confirmed on 9 June 2016 that Willis would present the series after co-hosting three previous series on the BBC. She will also present a series of The Voice Kids on ITV2.
In 2010 it was confirmed that Willis would replace Melinda Messenger on Channel 5 series Live from Studio Five, but after only two months presenting the series Willis announced she would be departing in order to co-present Big Brother’s Little Brother and was therefore replaced by Jayne Middlemiss.
In 2007, Willis guest hosted the tenth week of Big Brother’s Big Mouth. Three years later in 2010, Willis began presenting a Celebrity Big Brother online spin-off show, entitled Celebrity Big Brother’s Big i. She was then later announced as the new co-presenter on the final series of Big Brother’s Little Brother, hosting alongside George Lamb. In 2011, it was confirmed that she would be returning to the revived series, presenting spin-off show Big Brother’s Bit on the Side for two series from 2011 until 2013.
In 2012, fans made a Facebook account to campaign to make Willis the main presenter on Big Brother and to replace former host Brian Dowling, Willis has been compared in the media to a young Davina McCall.
On 13 March 2013 it was reported that Brian Dowling would be axed from Big Brother and be replaced by Willis with a source saying “Brian has been a great host but Emma is seen by channel chiefs as a true successor to Davina. They’re talking to her now about taking over the role from the summer” It was later confirmed, on 2 April 2013 by Channel 5 that Willis would be replacing Dowling as the new host of Big Brother.On 13 June 2013, She began presenting thefourteenth series of Big Brother.
As well as hosting Big Brother, Emma also presents the celebrity series of the show. She began doing so in the summer of 2013.
Even though Willis presents the main Big Brother and celebrity series, she still continued to host the spin-off show Bit on the Side, sharing the presenting duties with Rylan Clark. On 2 February 2015, it was announced that Willis was to present her final edition of Bit on the Side that night, and Clark would take over as the main presenter of the spin off show.
On 30 March 2014, Willis presented the Mum of the Year Awards, with the highlights being shown on Channel 5 that same evening
In mid-2013, Willis was confirmed as the replacement for Holly Willoughby on the BBC One talent show The Voice UK, which she began co-presenting in the third series, which began airing on 11 January 2014. She currently co-hosts the show with JLS singer Marvin Humes, who replaced Reggie Yates in 2014.
“The Voice is an absolutely brilliant TV show with the unique ability to showcase and nurture amazing raw talent. I couldn’t be more excited to be a part of it and I cannot wait to get started” – Emma Willis
On 5 August 2012, she began co-presenting Sunday Breakfast alongside Stephen Mulhern across the Heart Network.
Emma Griffiths married Busted member Matt Willis at Rushton Hall, Northamptonshire on 5 July 2008 after three years of dating. The wedding of Willis and Griffiths featured in OK magazine. She gave birth to their first child, daughter Isabelle Catherine Willis, on 20 June 2009 in Portland Hospital, London. On 25 November 2011, the couple had a baby boy, Ace Billy Willis and in May 2016, Willis gave birth to her third child, a girl Trixie Grace. She is an Aston Villa supporter, her hometown club.