This Sunday Downton Abbey closed the doors on its last ever series and for a lot of us that means only one thing, I’m a Celebrity is back this weekend. Yes the reality show that seemingly never ends returns to ITV over the next few weeks and today ITV announced the official starting line-up for this series. Refreshingly the line-up is devoid of reality stars or glamour models and instead features at least three or four people that the general public may have heard of. However if you’re struggling with one or two of the names we at The Custard TV have provided this handy guide to all ten participants.
Who is he?: As a choreographer he has worked with some of the biggest names in pop music such as Mariah Carey, Cher, Beyonce and Prince. However he is better known for his association with Simon Cowell’s various endeavours most notably The X-Factor on which he worked as creative director and was briefly a judge on its fourth series. Friedman has also provided similar work on Cowell’s other shows such as America’s Got Talent, Grease is the Word and the American version of The X-Factor.
Previous Reality TV Experience: Although he’s worked extensively on reality TV, Brian is yet to appear as contestant on a show such as I’m a Celeb so it’ll be interesting to see how he gets on.
How Will he Do?: American contestants don’t tend to too well on the show and despite his popularity with an ITV audience I can see Brian being one of the first to go.
Who is he? A retired boxer who held the WBO middleweight and super middleweight titles. Following his boxing career, Eubank has become known for his eccentric behaviour. He was the subject of a Louis Theroux documentary in 2001 whilst his family were part of a fly-on-the wall series for Channel Five in 2003.
Previous Reality TV Experience: Eubank has the dubious honour of being the first ever famous face to be evicted from the Celebrity Big Brother house back in 2001.
How Will he Do?: Eubank’s behaviour will probably irritate his fellow campmates however I think a certain percentage of the public will find him endearing. I could see him getting about halfway through the contest but I don’t think he’ll win.
Who is he?: An entrepreneur and businessman, Bannatyne garnered the most success with his range of health clubs. However he’s probably most famous for his role on the panel in Dragon’s Den which he held for twelve years. He is also the author of seven books and was awarded an OBE for his charity works.
Previous Reality TV Experience: Duncan appeared on a charity version of Strictly Come Dancing where he was competing against his fellow Dragon Peter Jones.
How Will he Do?: I do feel people’s perceptions of Duncan will change as a result of his participation on the show but I don’t think he has a big enough fanbase to win the thing.
Who is he?: Initially auditioning for the 2012 X-Factor as a soloist, Shelley was added to boyband Triple J to form Union J. After coming fourth in that year’s competition, Union J signed a record deal and to this date have had four top ten singles.
Previously Reality TV Experience: Obviously George found fame through a reality TV show but that’s about it.
How Will he Do?: Due to Union J’s teenage girl fanbase I can see George doing quite well in the competition despite coming across as rather bland in his introductory video.
Who is She?: Jorgie joined the cast of Hollyoaks in 2008 playing the loud-mouthed rebellious teenager Teresa McQueen. Following five years on the show, Jorgie left in 2013 only to return the following year however it was recently announced that she’ll depart for good next year.
Previous Reality TV Experience: In 2012, Jorgie took part in Dancing on Ice and finished in second place. Two years later she featured in the show’s ‘All-Star’ edition but crashed out first thanks to a disagreement with her partner. She also appeared on the show Born to Shine in which she was taught to street dance by talented teenagers.
How Will she Do?: Jorgie comes across really well in her video and thanks to a built-in Hollyoaks fanbase I can easily see her getting to the final.
Who is He?: A retired footballer who is most famous for playing for Newcastle United, making almost 200 appearances for the club. Dyer also played for the English National team, making 33 appearances in the main squad and playing both in the European and World Cups. He is perhaps most famous for his on the field scrap with team mate Lee Bowyer in 2005, a fight which saw both men sent off and Dyer receive a three match ban. After retiring from football, Dyer took up coaching and is currently coaching the Under-16 Ipswich team.
Previous Reality TV Experience: As far as I can tell Kieron is a reality TV novice.
How Will He Do?: I do feel that Kieron is this year’s unknown commodity and it just depends how much charisma he displays early on in the competition as this will determine how well he’ll actually fare.
Lady Colin Campbell
Who is She?: Born into a prominent Jamaican family, Campbell is probably best known as a royal biographer. Her most notorious work was a biography of Princess Diana which revealed details of her affair with Major James Hewitt. She also wrote a book about the Queen Mother which was highly criticised for including several facts that were later revealed to be untrue. Campbell also has an interested background as she was born female but was raised as a boy due to several birth defects. She married Lord Colin Campbell, the 11th Duke of Argyll, in 1974 after only knowing him for five days with the couple divorcing fourteen months later.
Previous Reality TV Experience: Although not a reality show, Lady Colin Campbell made a big impression when she appeared on Channel 4’s documentary programme How the Other Half Live.
How Will She Do?: I think Lady Colin Campbell is the least famous member of this year’s starting ten and I can easily see her being the first to leave the camp.
Who is She?: Best known for her association with Trinny Woodall, journalist and fashion designer Susannah hosted the incredibly popular What Not to Wear between 2001 and 2005. She and Trinny also hosted other programmes including Trinny and Susannah Undress… and Undress the Nation. As well as their TV shows, Trinny and Susannah founded the ready2shop website and in 2007 launched their own range at Littlewoods. Outside of her partnership with Trinny, Susannah has also worked for several prestigious fashion houses including Armani and John Galliano.
Previous Reality TV Experience: Susannah appeared on last year’s series of Celebrity Masterchef but didn’t make it past the first round.
How Will she Do?: I’m honestly not sure but from her introduction video she comes across as someone who’ll muck in and do her best to fit into the group so she may well grow on the audience watching at home.
Who is He?: Hadley is best known for his role in Spandau Ballet, one of the most British groups of the 1980s. The group’s popularity peaked in 1983 where they garnered a number one hit with True and a number two smash with Gold. Alongside these two songs, Spandau Ballet also had another seven top ten hits and five top ten albums. After Spandau Ballet split up, Hadley attempted a solo career before taking to the West End stage playing Billy Flynn in Chicago. In 2009, Spandau Ballet reformed, producing new material and recently embarking on a world tour.
Previous Reality TV Experience: Hadley appeared on the 2003 reality show Reborn in the USA in which musical acts from the 1980s and 1990s tried to carve a new career for themselves in America. Hadley eventually won the programme beating Michelle Gayle and Peter Cox from Go West in the final.
How Will he Do?: Due to Tony’s in-built fanbase and easy-going personality I can see him reaching the latter stages of the competition if not the final.
Who is She?: Fielding has been a TV presenter after since the age of nineteen and still holds the record for being the youngest ever host of Blue Peter. Modern audiences will probably know Fielding better as the host of Most Haunted, a programme that she has appeared on sporadically since 2002. Continuing the paranormal theme, Fielding has also hosted Ghosthunting with… on ITV2 in which she aids famous faces as they attempt to spend a night in a haunted house.
Previous Reality TV Experience: Fielding’s previous reality TV experience only amounts to appearances on the likes of Celebrity Come Dine with Me, Celebrity Stars in Their Eyes and Celebrity Eggheads.
How Will she Do?: Fielding has been a British institution on TV for the best part of thirty years and I feel her kooky personality will endear her to the audience at home.
So that’s the starting ten, but as we know there are always late arrivals who may well go on to win the whole thing. But I personally think that this year’s line-up shows promise as there’s a mixed bag of personalities and I feel there’s something for everyone among the starting ten.
What do you think of this year’s I’m a Celebrity line-up? Let us know by leaving a comment below.