A big wave surfer, an olympic runner, a beauty queen and a loudmouth disc jockey: the cast of Seven Network’s new reality TV show Celebrity Splash has been revealed.
The 14 contestants set to compete diving from the high board and spring board include, Miss Universe Australia Renae Ayris, Bra Boy Koby Abberton, Fox FM reporter Adam Richard, reality starlet Brynne Edelsten, comedian Josh Thomas, logie winner Denise Drysdale, olympian Tamsyn (Lewis) Manou and cricketer Andrew Symonds. They will be joined by television presenter Laura Csortan, swimmer Leisel Jones, AFL player Andrew Welsh, actress Demi Harman, male model Nick Bracks and Fat Pizza producer Paul Fenech.
Critics, already sceptical of the concept of the show, described the celebs as being pulled from the shallow end of the swimming pool.
An insider told The Newsroom, “Itʼs been a real struggle trying to find big names willing to take part.”
The show’s executive producer, Steve Murray, yesterday defended the choice of contestants, saying “I think the (selection) criteria has been more focused on getting people that are going to give it a really good crack and really put themselves out there.”
Seven regular Kerrie Anne Kennerley apparently turned down the diving show offer after her stint on Dancing With The Stars, because she was afraid she “might die”.
Big wave rider Koby Abberton believes his lack of fear will put him in good stead for the competition. “Iʼm not scared. I grew up jumping off cliffs,” he said.
Olympic diver Matthew Mitcham is said to be the mentor, while Tom Williams and former Miss Universe Australia Rachel Finch are to be named the hosts.
The contestants will begin training in Melbourne this week, and viewers find out which contestants sink, and which swim, when the show airs after Easter.
There is hope in the ratings war for Celebrity Splash. The British version on which the show is based – Splash! featuring celebrity diver Tom Daley – aired to a healthy audience of 5 million viewers before dropping out of ratings contention. A second series has been commissioned in the UK despite critics calling it a water bomb. – Kristy Coulcher
Photo from the Seven Network.