EMMA WILLIS has taken the helm of Channel 4’s The Circle – and is already plotting to return as host of Celebrity Big Brother.
The job of presenting both shows could become a reality if the plan to resurrect CBB comes off next year.
Emma Willis, seen presenting the live final Celebrity Big Brother, is already plotting to return as host if the show returns[/caption]
Emma, arguably the best female host on British telly, would be “devastated” if CBB or the non-celeb version returned without her as host.
In an exclusive interview ahead of series two of The Circle, which starts on Tuesday, she told me: “Big Brother will be 21 years old next year.
“If they did anything, I’d be devastated not to be involved in it.
“It’s been a huge part of my life, both working on it and watching it.
Emma, arguably the best female host on British telly, would be ‘devastated’ if CBB or the non-celeb version returned without her[/caption]
“It needs an anniversary, a big birthday. To never do it again would be a terrible shame.
“It has to find its feet and be celebratory and fun.”
But for now, it’s all about reality series The Circle.
In the show, contestants all live in the same building but are never allowed to meet or communicate — except on social media.
They have to convince the others to rank them. It was won last year by Alex Hobern, who pretended to be his girlfriend Kate. Everyone fell for it and he won the £75,000 prize.
Emma, who has been brought in to replace Maya Jama and Alice Levine, insists it will still be about the contestants, not her.
She added: “This show isn’t about the host.
“I’m A Celeb is, because Ant and Dec are f*****g brilliant. And their humour and links are great.
“But this show is all about the contestant. Last year we had a live start and finish and it was a shame we didn’t see the hosts more.”
I dipped in and out of The Circle last year and it is compelling viewing, like the early days of Big Brother.
And with big live shows, and Emma at the controls, it is definitely one for the Sky planner.
It’s like jail… but with a £100k prize
PART of being in The Circle means you live alone for up to three weeks – depending on how long you stay in the competition.
But this is a prospect that fills Emma with dread.
Alex Hobern is crowned the winner of ‘The Circle’ in 2018[/caption]
She said: “I get cabin fever if I don’t leave the house for two days, and I have a garden.
“Even if I just pop to the shops once a day, I need to do something.
“It’s being aware of your surroundings, isn’t it?
“Phillip Schofield described it as ‘isolation’. They’re not in prison!
“They get £100,000 at the end of it. They do have an outdoor space, and a gym.”
But with a laugh, she added: “Then again, so do prisons.”
PROMISE MAY BE PHONEY
EMMA wants her kids to watch The Circle when they are older to teach them the dangers of social media.
The presenter has three children with hubby Matt Willis of Busted – Isabelle, ten, son Ace, seven, and Trixie, three. She said of The Circle: “It’s educational. Don’t believe everything you read or see on social media.
“My children are not on social media. They have an iPad to do homework and play games but they’re too young.”
Emma said she initially promised Isabelle a mobile when she goes to secondary school, which is just around the corner, but now she is backtracking fast.
She added: “I’ve learned my lesson. She has an older cousin who she adores, who drinks Coca- Cola, so she’s always wanted to drink it.
“When she was four, we said, ‘You can’t have it until you’re ten.’ Every year, on her birthday, she says, ‘Five more years to go’, ‘Four more years to go . . . ’ Now we’ve screwed ourselves.”
MANY of the contestants on the C4 series either fake an identity or steal a loved one’s – but not Emma if she took part. She said: “I would be me. I couldn’t keep up and I’d feel guilty about lying. I feel bad about not answering an email or a text. So lying about being a totally different person would be too much.”
WHAT? The Circle, Tuesday, 9.15pm on C4.
WHY? Emma Willis hosts a launch show for this year’s returning series, featuring the contestants’ friends and families as well as getting the lowdown from 2018’s winner.
No Love for Isle
SHE might be fronting the latest reality show but Emma hasn’t watched another TV juggernaut – Love Island.
At least, not since the days of Paul Danan.
Emma hasn’t watched Love Island since the days of Paul Danan and Calum Best[/caption]
She said: “I’ve never seen a single episode of Love Island. I watched the old-school one with Calum Best and Paul Danan.
“I’ve never seen the new-age one. It’s essentially people-watching, which we all love because we’re f*****g nosey.”
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EMMA is on social media but does not go over the top with posts. She said: “I don’t do anything other than work and do the school run. No one wants to see pics of me just sat in the car. I find it quite an odd concept – I used to over- think it.”
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