Wil Willis leaves Forged In Fire for fatherhood

Wil Willis has given up hosting the History Channel’s Forged In Fire, as he has decided to spend more time at home with his wife and young son.

Wil Willis has been the host of Forged In Fire since its first season, which premiered in 2015. The army veteran presented the show that saw four bladesmiths competing in a weapon-forging competition to impress a panel of judges and win the prize money. Wil became well-known for his military demeanour, as well as his ability to relate to the contestants. This, in turn, made him an integral part of the growing viewership of the show.

In October 2020, the trailer for the eighth season of Forged In Fire was released, revealing that Wil would no longer be hosting the show. The new season is now hosted by two-time winner of the show and former panellist, Ben Abbott, who will be assuming the hosting duties for the foreseeable future. Fans were confused by the sudden change and questioned why neither Will nor the History Channel had made a formal announcement prior to the season preview’s release.

According to Wil’s Instagram page, he and his wife welcomed their son in March 2020, and had spent the duration of the quarantine in the mountains, away from others. The new father had chosen to live a simpler and basic life with his family, subsequently opting not to return to the studio to film the new season.

In an Instagram video in November 2020, Wil had gotten himself involved in controversy regarding his stance on mask wearing. The presenter expressed that he believes that wearing a mask should be up to the individual, and further claimed that the national mandate is a political move and not in the interest of the public. His opinion caused for some Forged In Fire viewers to boycott the show, claiming that the host was spreading unsafe information about COVID-19.

This led to Wil confirming his departure thereafter, as he asked the public not to boycott the show because he would not be returning. He added that they would probably enjoy Forged In Fire more now that he is not a part of it.