WRITING - NEWS OF THE WORLD 1 JUNE 2003
I get asked every day (so can you all stop asking me now), "Do you regret doing Big Brother?" and "Would you do it again?". The answer is yes. I also believe you cannot regret what you have done, you can only regret what you do not do in life, so no regrets there.
I had a fantastic five weeks of fun in the house. The shame is that all the good stuff which was going on in the house wasn't wasn't shown to the people who count, the viewers. But that is the nature of the beast.
The first series was a fantastic experiment showing how complete strangers would react when locked up together competing for money. (a game which I think I played rather well). Despite what the programme makers decided to show you, and you must remember even though it's "reality" television it can still be edited, as I and others have found out to our cost and sure some of the current contestants will find out. Although I must say, most of them have the charisma of wounded badgers!
I think the charm of the first series was that all of us were blissfully unaware just how famous we had become during our time in the house and didn't realise the reaction we would get when we were "released."
I certainly don't think that any of us went in to the house to be famous, if I had thought that perhaps I would have played
The problem with Big Brother now is that all of the contestants realise just how to play the game and how to push themselves forward to be the next "star" but I doubt any of them will consider going down the "Nasty Nick" route, that would be far too real.
What big brother has taught me is that fame is a very fickle thing. When I first came out of the house every newspaper wanted to be my friend and do a story on me and it didn't take long for those so called friendly stories to change into complete hatchet jobs. And luckily it didn't take me long to realise that all that nonsense goes with the territory. they build you up, they knock you down whether the stories be true or false.
I think it's very unfair when the press accuse us of being liggers, attending the opening of an envelope, blah, blah, blah. Well what would you do? One minute you're a nobody sitting at home drinking tea, watching celebs giving it large on tv. The next you're invited to premiers with Brad Pitt. I think we'd all take the Brad Pitt option.
I have learnt a lot in the past three years, the industry is fickle, uncompromising and forgetful. I have been lucky and I am grateful for it, I have had a steady flow of work since I left the house. I have met some an amazing people, and have done some things that you can only dream about. I had my own show that had over million and half viewers on average every night and I've just finished a tour of the Rocky Horror show, which has been such fun. I have some good projects on the go a the moment, and I am also attending class.
It is very hard to move on from Big Brother once you have left. The winners are looked after very well, my friend Craig has done really well as has Brain Dowling and Kate Lawyer (although she is weak on RISE)and good luck to them.
There is a great snobbery in the industry towards contestants from Big Brother which I think makes all of us much more determined to succeed. After all we passed the audition and we made the show a huge success, we must have something and after all it was only, a game show.
Copyright The News of the World and Nick Bateman.