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"I'm a Celebrity..." returns

12th November 2008

The popular ITV reality programme, which has proved a boon to the careers of fading celebrities, is back on Sunday for its eighth series in the Australian jungle.

The contestants are filmed 24 hours a day as they take part in "Bushtucker Trials" to win food for the camp, with viewers voting to decide who should be evicted from the show.

Nine-times Wimbledon winner Martina Navratilova, former MP and controversial chat show host Robert Kilroy-Silk and 71-year-old George Takei, who played Mr Sulu in Star Trek, are among this year's contestants.

"I like challenges. I am willing to boldly go. I think it is going to be good fun," Takei said.

Brian Paddick, once Britain's highest ranked gay police officer, Carly Zucker, the fiancee of Chelsea and England midfielder Joe Cole, TV presenter Esther Rantzen and Simon Webbe, who was in boy band Blue, will also be taking part.

Glamour model Nicola McLean, ex-Eastenders actor Joe Swash and presenter Dani Behr are the other participants.

Behr, 37, once a regular face on TV, admitted that being a contestant on the programme was "the fastest ... but not the most dignified way" to make a comeback.

The producers of the show, hosted again by Ant and Dec, have promised to make the experience far from pleasant for the 10 stars

"Each year, in a bid to test the celebrities, we develop new ways of pushing the boundaries and this series will push them further than ever before," said Executive Producer Richard Cowles.

Previous winners include Carol Thatcher and Tony Blackburn while last year's "King of the Jungle" was actor Christopher Biggins.

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