Red Dwarf actor heads back to UK to be with family as Edwina Currie and Jake Quickenden prepare to replace Gemma Collins
The Red Dwarf star Craig Charles has left I’m a Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here! following the sudden death of his brother.
The Coronation Street actor was missing from the live section of Wednesday’s show after he was told about the death of his older brother Dean, who reportedly died after having a heart attack at his home in Spain.
Charles, 50, was not seen with his fellow contestants when presenters Ant and Dec entered the campsite. Earlier, the duo told viewers they could not vote for Charles when deciding which celebrity should take part in the next bushtucker trial.
An ITV spokesman said: “Craig decided to leave the camp earlier today and will be heading back to his family in the UK. We send our sincere condolences to Craig and his family.”
Meanwhile, The Only Way Is Essex star Gemma Collins told fellow campers the show had put her off TV for life after she quit the jungle. She left after managing just three days while grumbling about hunger and complaining that she thought she might have malaria.
Collins will be replaced in the jungle by former Conservative MP Edwina Currie and X Factor reject Jake Quickenden, who arrive on screens on Thursday night.
She said she had no regrets about taking part and suggested she would refocus her life as she declared: “I believe that this is the start of me now, and nothing is going to change it.”
Collins follows past contestants Brian Conley, Nigel Havers and Katie Price in leaving the show early.
Explaining her decision to go, she said: “I have to start living my life the way I want to live it and this isn’t it. Do you know what, I don’t want any of this, I just don’t want to have to put myself through such extreme measures all the time. I just want to be normal.”
And she told the others on the show: “I’m so out of my comfort zone that it’s made me realise the girl I once was. I have become a character, a puppet of Gemma that is not the real me and no amount of money would keep me here.
“I just want to be me and I don’t need to sit in the jungle for three weeks and play up to the cameras, I’m tired of it, I just want to be me. This has been the most life-changing thing I’ve ever done and the best thing I could have done for myself.”
Collins’s manager Gemma Wheatley told BBC Radio 5 live that she would not be receiving her full fee.
Wheatley said: “The way the contract is positioned, she gets a percentage for a certain number of days.
“But absolutely she won’t get the full fee and it would be very unfair if she did. She hasn’t done her time and she shouldn’t receive her full fee and she’s well aware of that. She will receive a small proportion of it.”
Currie said she had decided to go on the show because she wanted to continue having adventures at her stage of life. “I am 68 and I like having adventures. If an advanced stage of life is not an adventure, then you might as well give up on everything. This will certainly be something I have never experienced before,” she said.
Quickenden, 26, said he had no hesitation in agreeing to take part just weeks after his X Factor dreams were shattered.
“Things like this don’t happen to me. I am just a normal bloke,” he said. “I am going to take this opportunity with both hands. I want to relish everything that is thrown at me. I actually haven’t stopped grinning since I got offered this.”
This article was written by Staff and agencies, for theguardian.com on Thursday 20th November 2014 10.01 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010