The new show is to be hosted by Gabby Logan and Strictly host Tess Daly’s husband Vernon Kay. All of those taking part will receive expert help from British Olympic diving hero Tom Daley. Tom has recently found himself near the top of the calendar sales charts with photos of him in wet swimming trunks proving very popular with the ladies.
The 15 competitors will be spread amongst the 3 opening programmes with the first 5 taking part being presenter Jenni Falconer, comedienne Helen Lederer, actor Jake Canuso, comic Omid Djalili and Sugababe Jade Ewen.
The show is based on a successful Dutch tv show called Sterren Springen Op Zaterdag (Stars Jumping On Saturday) which first aired in August last year. As well as the new UK show the format has also been sold to US network ABC where their version will be called Splash Celebrity.
The show certainly carries plenty of risk for the competitors as during the first season of the Dutch show one competitor ruptured an eardrum and another broke her nose.
The other competitors competing in Splash include Joey Essex, Linda Barker, Jennifer Metcalfe, Charlotte Jackson and model Caprice. It had been rumoured that Jordan’s former boyfriend Leandro Penna was to take part in the show but he was not named in the final line-up.
Some of those taking part have been talking about their fears with Sugababe Jade revealing that she has only just learnt to swim having been scared of water when she was growing up.
“I was never taught to swim, I went to a performing arts school so we didn’t have PE. As an adult, I’d blag it and sit by the pool and watch people swim and try to copy.
“My mum always told me, ‘Don’t go in the sea or you’ll drown.’ I’ve grown up thinking I’ll drown if I go in the water. I can’t get it out of my head.”
Another competitor who has been voicing her fears is model Caprice Bourret who thinks that her large breasts will prove to be a problem when she starts diving. She told a programme source that she was concerned that hitting the water with such large breasts would be painful so she has received assurances that she will be taught techniques to deal with the problem.
However the competitor who will have to overcome the greatest fear is undoubtedly Benidorm star Canuso who nearly died in 2004 when he got caught up in the tsunami while he was on holiday in Thailand. Jake said that as the pool they have to dive into is so deep he feels can’t get to the surface quickly enough. He said that this comes from his experience in the tsunami and he knows that he does have enough time and air to get to the surface.
Tom Daley is hoping that Splash! marks the start of a new career in the media although he probably has plenty of years of competitive diving left as he is still only 18-years old.
Once competitors have made their dives on the show they will be awarded marks from a panel of 4 judges that includes Tom Daley. After this the phone lines are opened for viewers to vote for their favourites. Then at the end of the show the top scoring diver goes through to the semi-final stage with the next two highest scoring divers entering a Splash! Off which is scored by the judging panel to decide the next person proceeding through to the semi-finals.
Splash! starts this Saturday (5th January) on ITV1 at 7.15.