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MasterChef Australia: Jamie Oliver 'signs $2 million deal' to replace Jock Zonfrillo as a judge

Rumours are swirling that Jamie Oliver will join Andy Allen and Melissa Leong on the MasterChef panel.

As MasterChef Australia gets ready to start filming next year’s season of the hit show, a very famous face has been tipped to take on the judging role.

It comes after the shock death of Scottish chef Jock Zonfrillo in April this year, who used to stand beside Andy Allen and Melissa Leong as one of three judges on the Channel 10 show.

Andy Allen, Jamie Oliver, Jock Zonfrillo and Melissa Leong on MasterChef Australia
Jamie Oliver will reportedly replace Jock Zonfrillo as a judge on MasterChef Australia. Photo: Channel 10

According to Woman’s Day, Jamie Oliver has negotiated a $2 million deal to fill Jock’s big boots, however, it’s believed he hasn’t agreed to permanently take on the role

Daily Mail reports that Woman’s Day revealed in their latest issue that Jamie is set to begin filming the show in November.

“Jamie has inked a deal worth around $2 million”, the source told Women's Day.

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The report also said that the hefty sum includes accommodation for Jamie and his family when they visit him in January and a trip back to the UK for the star at Christmas.

MasterChef Australia regular

Indeed Jamie is no stranger to the MasterChef Australia family, having appeared on the show numerous times, the latest being on the premiere episode of the last season.

Fans absolutely loved his appearance on the show, where he spilled a personal secret after a contestant presented a dish that combined her Russian and Ukrainian heritage.

Jamie Oliver on MasterChef Australia 2023
Jamie appeared on the season premiere of the 2023 season of the show. Photo: Channel 10

Oliver was taken aback by the “delicious” dish, which prompted him to spill an unknown fact about his home life.

“With things going on in the world at the moment, it’s kind of profound that you’re here with a Russian and Ukrainian dish,” he said.

“Can I give you a little secret, that no one really knows? I’ve had two Ukrainian families living with me for the last seven months. I’ve had my fair share of borscht! And this is absolutely delicious.”

Jamie ‘in shock’ at Jock’s death

In April, Jamie Oliver took to his Instagram account in shock after hearing the news of the passing of his friend and colleague, Jock Zonfrillo.

After working with the 46-year-old on this year's MasterChef series, he said he had "the best time" with Jock.

"I can’t tell how good it was to work with him! Jock was very generous to me with his time and spirit in the show and for that I was really grateful," he said, after waking to the tragic news.

"Jock will be so very missed… I can’t believe I’m writing this… Sending heartfelt love and condolences to all of his family, friends and his second family the master chef team and contestants."

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