I hear that Nigel Farage had been hoping for a six-figure memoir deal from HarperCollins for his book.
He is way too polite to reveal figures but admits: “It will tell about a time in history which changed the world of politics and beyond.” Nigel now also hosts his own radio show on LBC London, and adds: “It’s such fun and we cover far ranging diverse topics which hopefully are highly entertaining.”
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Did you know that if you’re a pop star you have to pay to appear on your favourite shows? Going on Strictly Come Dancing or The X Factor costs a band a fortune. It’s about £30,000 to go on Strictly, and about £100,000 for The X Factor, because you pay for the whole production, the lighting, the staging. I was told: “You will sell records, but it’s all about money. Hence the reason why only big US stars can afford to appear on them now.”
It’s years since she appeared as the leather-clad, karate-kicking Emma Peel in the Avengers. Now Diana Rigg will be making a more sedate appearance when the TV series Victoria returns to our screens in the autumn. But she told me: “I am amazed at how the series has survived and now become a cult. I still watch it myself from time to time and almost forget it’s me.”
After all the dramatic Bake Off headlines, Paul Hollywood says he’s finally looking forward to a “brand new adventure” as he prepares for the show’s big move to C4 without Mary, Sue and Mel. He adds: “I think once the show gets underway people will love it as much as the old show, so it will all calm down.”
Miranda Hart is making her first move into children’s TV. She has created 10 two-minute episodes of ‘So Sammy’ for the Disney Channel, which have launched on the broadcaster’s app. The series of shorts revolves around a ‘tweenage’ blogger and her colourful family. Miranda reveals: “I hope children everywhere will be enchanted by lovely, funny Sammy who gets herself in too many silly scrapes and adventures.”
X Factor are scrapping their live final shows this year, say insiders, but I can reveal the real reason – it’s cost. ITV want to save more money on the expensive show, meaning that Louis, Sharon and co will be paid far less, and of course taped shows are cheaper and easier to run.
Former The Royal star Amy Robbins will guest star in Hollyoaks as Scott’s mum, Lynette Drinkwell, who will soon arrive in the village to see her son and her sister. Amy tells me: “It’s a great show and I am so happy I landed the role, as with all the repeats of The Royal people think I am trapped in a timewarp, which is annoying.”
As Emmerdale’s Faith Dingle turns psychic, actress Sally Dexter tells me who she’d love to contact from beyond the grave. “I think I would love to look into the script conference and see how they decide who gets what storyline,” she said. “I am so happy with mine so far, as Faith is fun and yet has a dark side too, but it would be great to eavesdrop.”
Derek Griffiths – aka mechanic Freddie Smith – is leaving Coronation Street. The actor, 70, has been on the cobbles for a year and will be on screen until the end of April. It is understood he has now filmed his final scenes. A source tells me that it was Derek’s decision to leave at the end of his contract. Derek will join a stage production of Driving Miss Daisy at the end of his contract and tour the UK.
Fans of silent films will love the news that Harold Lloyd’s comedy films are to be made into a series of animated features. The comedian’s estate has signed a deal with London-based Cinesite Studios and Comic Animations to adapt some of the nearly 200 stunt-filled films he made over his career. They will hit the screens here later in the year.
ITV3 will broadcast Morecambe & Wise Forever. The new two-part documentary series follows on from ITV3’s previous ‘Forever’ shows on Les Dawson, Rising Damp, and Carry On. Morecambe & Wise Forever, which will be narrated by Martin Clunes, will hear stories told by those who knew Eric and Ernie best – including Eric’s wife Joan, sons Gary and Stephen and daughter Gail. The show will also reveal recently-found photos of the duo, images which have never been seen in public before.
TV presenter Ben Fogle tells me that manners have slipped in Britain and society has lost its charm. Ben has made a passionate plea for people to behave less selfishly towards others, regardless of their age or gender. “I do believe it’s down to the parents and we should teach people the manners than can set them up for life,” he said. Do we all agree?