During the first instalment of the new E4 series, James, 34, and Anthea, 61, were paired together for an audition in front of the other celebrities where they showed off their best moves.
It comes after fellow The Real Dirty Dancing star Lee Ryan revealed James’ crush on Anthea during the show, joking: “Every time she danced, he was drooling!”
At the start of the episode, after all the celebrities met each other for the first time, James gushed: “Anthea looks just as good now as she did when I used to watch her on TV as a kid. She’s absolutely gorgeous!”
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And James was left delighted when he was paired with Anthea later on the show for an ice breaker audition in front of the other celebrities.
To which their fellow contestants joked it was a “dream come true” for the TOWIE star with Chelsee Healey joking: “Arg has got those snake hips, mate, he knows how to move!”
Speaking in a VT, James joked about their “chemistry”, saying: “I really had to channel my inner Johnny and take control of the situation. I’m not going to lie, I absolutely loved it!
“She [Anthea] was a bit nervous at first but then I think she got quite into it and in fact I think she quite enjoyed dancing with me!”
And a preview for the next episode saw the first official celebrity pairings revealed as James said: “I would love to be partnered with Anthea, that would be the dream!”
The Real Dirty Dancing sees 10 celebrities set to have the time of their life recreating scenes from the iconic movie as they fight it out to be crowned the best Baby and Johnny.
Talking to new magazine about the making of the show, Blue singer Lee said: “It wasn’t taken too serious at all. It was immensely fun.
“Arg was obsessed with Anthea though! He was dribbling from his mouth. Every time she danced, he was drooling and I was like, ‘No, stick your chin up.’ But he made it very known that he felt feelings for her and it was great.”
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Lee also sings the praises of the star who became a children’s TV pin-up as she did the classic Blue Peter makes with sticky back plastic in the 1980s.
“She’s an absolute darling to be around and we got on so well…everyone got on really well,” he says of Anthea.
The Real Dirty Dancing continues on Tuesday at 9pm on E4.
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