Gok Wan is best known for dishing out fashion advice in various shows on Channel Four, and most recently appeared as a fashion commentator at this year’s Royal Ascot race meeting, but Gok told me at the event: “I have just signed for panto again this year in Southampton playing the Fairy Godmother. It was not my idea, Ann! I am told I am good in the role, and yes she will be fashion-conscious ... all the best fairies are.”
Strictly Come Dancing star James Jordan may have been axed from this year’s show, but he has been offered a book deal to ‘dish the dirt’ on the inside secrets of the BBC’s hit dance show. Will he say yes, even though his wife Ola is still with the show? Wait and see...
Former Spice Girl Mel B may have been asked to become a judge on this year’s X Factor, but don’t believe the hype that it’s for a million pounds. A source tells me: “ITV simply don’t have that kind of money for a show like this now, and Mel was more than happy to snap up a return to UK TV.”
Caroline Flack meanwhile has been ‘let go’ from the sister show The Extra Factor after three years. She tried to tell her fans she had decided to go, but the TV team have already announced her replacement – Radio One DJ Sarah Jane Crawford. Caroline tells me: “I had a wonderful few years and I will miss the show, but all good things, as they say...”
ITV has axed game show Amazing Greys after just one series. The Saturday night contest, co-hosted by Paddy McGuinness and 69-year-old Angela Rippon, which pitched youngsters against expert golden oldies in a series of technical challenges, has been given the chop.
Emmerdale actress Natalie J Robb, who plays Mora in the soap, tells me that since she has her new shorter hairstyle she often gets mistaken for Breakfast TV presenter Lorraine Kelly. “I thought it was just the accent, but it appears people think we actually look alike, but I don’t see it myself,” she said.
Coronation Street star Antony Cotton has confirmed that he will be sticking with the soap for at least another year. Cotton, who plays Sean Tully in the soap, announced he will also have a “huge storyline” later this year that will keep viewers gripped.
Remember Hi Di Hi star Ruth Madoc who played Gladys Pugh? She is coming back to TV by appearing in the new series of Benidorm. “I am playing a glitzy nightclub singer with a rather dubious past, so it should be fun, but my roles now tend to be old bags,” she laughed.
Coronation Street star Paula Lane has revealed she is pregnant with her first child. The actress from Huddersfield, who plays Kylie Platt in the show, tells me she has no idea if her off-screen happiness will be written into the show, but says: “I would be happy for it, then I don’t need to hide behind sofas for months on end.”
Celebrity Masterchef is back, but as ever the pay scale on offer to the ‘stars’ always varies, with many thinking they are all on the same rate. Let’s hope that cuddly Russell Grant has no idea he comes in as the cheapest of the lot, but then again he will have seen that in the stars, won’t he?
Neil Oliver, who hosts the BBC show ‘Coast’, tells me the secret of what’s in his man bag that he lumbers around with him on screen. “Basic things like maps, biscuits and water, and of course my umbrella,” he said. “We seem to need one of those at least once a day during filming...”
Pasha Bocarie has joined the cast of Emmerdale. The actor will play businessman Rakesh Kotecha, who will come to the village next month, as part of Priya Sharma’s arranged marriage storyline.
The Crimson Field’s writer Sarah Phelps says the wartime period drama has been axed by the BBC. “I was hopeful of a second series, but sadly they decided not to go ahead with it, which is a shame, but it’s the way drama goes,” she said. “I had a great time doing it, though.”
Brian McFadden has admitted he is trying to get in shape ahead of a new TV presenting job. He said: “I have always been the fat one from Westlife, so I decided to get in shape. As I am hosting a dating show I thought this is as good a time as any, so yes I have done just that.”
Alexandra Burke, the former X Factor winner, is now appearing in the musical The Bodyguard, in London, in the Whitney Houston role. She tells me: “I was stunned to land the role and still pinch myself, but what a treat to be doing a musical like this.”
Former Baywatch actor and pop star David Hasselhoff is worshipped in Germany, so who better to present a one-hour special about the fall of the Berlin Wall? In Hasselhoff vs the Berlin Wall, the Hoff will explain his connection to this significant moment in time.
Paul Martin, who hosts the hit daytime show Flog It, tells me he is often asked when out shopping what things are worth. He said: “They show me pictures on their phones, and even carry things around with them in their bags, but you know it’s not the show, and at that point I have no idea. We need the experts to value it.”
Former EastEnders actress Charlie Brooks, who played Janine, tells me that she would still consider a return to the soap even though her character is currently in prison. “I think given this is a soap, anything can happen, I mean now David Wicks has gone, who knows what can get her out of her prison drama?”