Strictly Come Dancing, the British entertainment smash that was the basis for Dancing With The Stars, is getting a new showrunner. Louise Rainbow is stepping down from the BBC One series to be replaced by series editor Sarah James.

Rainbow leaves after six years with the current series to be her last. She will continue as an exec producer on the Strictly live tour in 2019 and will consult on 2019’s version of the show.

James has been series editor of the BBC Studios-produced format for the last two years and was series producer before that. She has previously worked on shows including Big Brother, The X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent.

Strictly Come Dancing, which is hosted by Claudia Winkleman and Tess Daly, is set to celebrate its 15th anniversary next May.

Rainbow said, “Working on Strictly has been the most amazing six years of my career and it’s an honour to be the show’s longest-serving Executive Producer. Over this time we have achieved amazing viewing figures and won numerous awards, including a Bafta and four National Television Awards. These achievements are down to one thing – the brilliant Strictly team. I will miss them so much but knowing that the wonderful Sarah is taking over guarantees they will be in safe and talented hands. I will continue to be part of the Strictly family, working on the next tour and doing some consultancy work on the show in 2019.”

James added, “I am beyond thrilled that next year I’ll be taking on the role of Executive Producer for Strictly Come Dancing. The Strictly team is the best in the business and working alongside them for the last five years has been the highlight of my career. I have big shoes to fill and I want to thank Louise for all her help and support. I’m passionate about dance and even more so about Strictly and I’m looking forward to creating more fantastic shows that our viewers continue to take into their living rooms and their hearts.”

Suzy Lamb, Managing Director Entertainment & Music, BBC Studios, said, “I’d like to thank Louise for doing such a brilliant job exec producing Strictly Come Dancing for the last six series. Sarah James is hugely talented, we have worked together before. She has a wealth of experience, having been Strictly’s Series Editor for the last two years and I’m delighted she is taking on the glitterball baton as Executive Producer in 2019.”