'Torvill and Dean' stars Will Tudor and Poppy Lee Friar were told they wouldn't have to perform the Olympians' award-winning routine.

Poppy Lee Friar

Poppy Lee Friar

The pair were stopped from performing the film's climatic ice dance in the new ITV drama about skating legends Christopher Dean and Jayne Torvill - because programme bosses felt that no actor could do the gold medal-winning pros' skating skills justice.

Screenwriter William Ivory said: "I thought we could intercut between the two but it just made it even worse.

It would be like Frank Sinatra singing and then karaoke. It's a hard dance."

Executive producer Emily Dalton added: "We hope people don't feel robbed.

"But anyone who has seen anyone do the dance will know no one can do it like them."

Torvill and Dean competed in the 1984 Olympics in Sarajevo and made history by scoring 12 perfect sixes from the judges.

The triumphant pair became the highest-scoring performers of all time after skating to Maurice Ravel's 'Bolero', and their performance was watched by a British television audience of more than 24 million people.

Will respected ITV's decision to not include the dance, despite the fact that he and his 23-year-old co-star were given a crash course in ice skating when they signed up for the roles.

The 31-year-old star is quoted by the Daily Star newspaper as saying: "The Bolero was their interpretation of the story and it is so personal to them."

The ITV drama will cover the pair's journey from teen skaters to global skating legends.

The original duo were heavily involved in the biopic to ensure accuracy but did not interfere in the production.

Torvill & Dean, Christmas Day at 9.15pm on ITV.