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EDITIONS
Wednesday, 16 October, 2002, 09:40 GMT 10:40 UK
Backstage at the TV awards
Graham Norton and Ulrika Jonsson
Jonsson was one of the most hotly-anticipated guests

A galaxy of stars brightened up a rain-sodden evening as they rolled up for the National Television Awards, but the most hotly-anticipated guests were not even nominated.

They were Pamela Anderson and Ulrika Jonsson - women arguably more famous for their taste in men than their television work.


It's like being a football manager - if your team's in the relegation zone every year, you go down

Ricky Tomlinson on Brookside

Anderson sneaked in seconds before the ceremony began and declined to take any questions in the press room, dodging in and out before you could say Tommy Lee.

Jonsson, who has just published details of her affair with England coach Sven Goran Eriksson, was slightly more obliging.

She was unrepentant about her revelations, declaring: "Je ne regrette rien."

Asked about the garish outfit Eriksson's girlfriend Nancy Dell'Olio wore to a Downing Street reception, Jonsson said through gritted teeth: "It was lovely."

EastEnders' Kat Slater, Jessie Wallace, told how Michelle Ryan - who plays her screen daughter Zoe - re-joined the cast on Tuesday after being signed off by doctors.

"I asked her if she was nervous and she said she was just really excited to be back. She looks really well," she said.

Cutting comments

Fashion experts Susannah Constantine and Trinny Woodall let rip about the sartorial disasters on show.

"Carol Vorderman has come such a long way in her figure, her hair and her make-up, but she's still dressing in 80s clothing," said Constantine.

Pamela Anderson presented an award to the Pop Idol judges
ITV1's Pop Idol will be back next year
Vorderman herself said she was feeling fine after her mystery health scare.

She refused to expand upon it but added: "It was a strange to be lying on my back for 12 days."

Ricky Tomlinson lamented the demise of his former show Brookside.

"When me and Sue Johnston were in it we were getting 8.5m viewers, now it's down to 1.5m.

"It's like being a football manager - if your team's in the relegation zone every year, you go down. It's had 20 years to get it right - even Peter Reid didn't get that long at Sunderland."

Winning formula

The future of reality TV seemed to be assured with awards for Pop Idol and Big Brother.

Pop Idol judge Nicky Chapman said the show would be coming back with a "fresh angle" next year.

Fame Academy contestant Lemar Obika was permitted to attend the ceremony as a reward for being this week's star pupil.

Presenter David Dickinson
Dickinson: Award was a 'bobby dazzler'
The BBC's reality show has got off to a shaky start, but headmaster Richard Park - taking a night off from his duties - said: "As the weeks go by, everyone is going to be into it."

Pop Idol Will Young, who presented an award, was greeted by screaming fans.

"I'm on tour so I'm used to the noise," he said.

Auf Wiedersehen, Pet writers Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais revealed they have come up with a formula for keeping the lads together which would start off in "northern climes with snow on the ground".

While one of the show's stars, Tim Healy, said he was "appalled" by a report the show's cast had fallen out over money, dismissing it as a complete fabrication.

Gaby Roslin said she was looking forward to taking over the role of Mama Morton in West End musical Chicago on 18 November, adding: "I've always fancied myself as a lesbian prison warden."

Trevor moves on

Alex Fearns, who recently gave up playing Trevor in EastEnders, talked about his new film, Mandancing, which starts shooting in Scotland next month.

"I play the lead role - a guy called Jimmy. He's going to be very different to Trevor," he said.

Perhaps the surprise winner of the night was cult show Bargain Hunt, which recently gained a primetime slot.

Presenter David Dickinson said he was bowled over by being a sex symbol at age 60, but his "size 11s remain firmly on the ground".

Asked about his gong, Dickinson let fly with his Bargain Hunt banter, declaring: "It's not as cheap as chips. It's a bobby dazzler. It's priceless."

See also:

15 Oct 02 | Entertainment
16 Oct 02 | Entertainment
14 Jul 02 | Entertainment
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