Saturday 10 December 2016

Celebrity First Dates on the cards for RTE...but what Irish celebrities will take part?

Published 13/07/2016 | 08:25

Vogue Williams & Roz Purcell pictured enjoying Moët Party Day in Dublin. Picture: Anthony Woods
Vogue Williams & Roz Purcell pictured enjoying Moët Party Day in Dublin. Picture: Anthony Woods
Mateo Saina
Alice Marr and Mateo Saina of First Dates Ireland
Foodie and model Rozanna Purcell. Photo: Cathal Burke / VIPIRELAND.COM
Roz Purcell at Taste of Dublin . Photo: Fergal Phillips
Jessica Wright arriving at the National Television Awards 2016. Photo: Yui Mok/PA Wire
Brian McFadden has launched a foul-mouthed attack on a Twitter user (Photo by Mark Robert Milan/GC Images)
Guests arriving at The Marker Hotel for The VIP style awards. Photos John Dardis Pictured-Roz Purcell
Vogue Williams in Dublin

A celebrity edition of First Dates Ireland could be on the cards, given the run-away success of the RTE series.

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After becoming one of RTE2's most-watched shows of the year, a second series has already gone into pre-production as Irish viewers fell in love with the reality dating show.

Now a TV source has said that the broadcaster may consider a celebrity version as a natural follow-on to the popular programme.

"This is a format that has been massively popular for RTE and was watched by its key demographic of 18-34-year-olds, so a second show was always going to be on the cards," said the source.

Alice Marr and Mateo Saina of First Dates Ireland
Alice Marr and Mateo Saina of First Dates Ireland

"A celebrity version of the Irish show is definitely something that could work for them, provided they get all the right celebrities on board."

Read more: Revealed: Irish stars set to bank €5k for Celebrity Operation Transformation

The Irish version of the show has had a celebrity element to it already, given that single stars like Vogue Williams and Al Porter featured on the RTE Player talking about their own dating disasters.

Vogue, who confirmed the end of her three year marriage to ex-Westlife star Brian McFadden last summer, has already proved to be a hit on RTE with her own documentary series.

Brian McFadden has launched a foul-mouthed attack on a Twitter user (Photo by Mark Robert Milan/GC Images)
Brian McFadden has launched a foul-mouthed attack on a Twitter user (Photo by Mark Robert Milan/GC Images)

Meanwhile, newly single model and health food guru Roz Purcell has experience on RTE reality TV shows - having appeared on Celebrity Bainisteoir in 2012.

First Dates pulled in an average viewership of nearly 300,000 for its first series. More than 4,500 hopeful singletons applied to take part in series two.

Last week saw Channel 4 screening a celebrity version of its First Dates show, which pulled in huge viewing figures for the station.

Featuring stars like TOWIE's Jess Wright and EastEnders actors Richard Blackwood, it saw famous faces being paired with 'normal' people.

Jessica Wright arriving at the National Television Awards 2016. Photo: Yui Mok/PA Wire
Jessica Wright arriving at the National Television Awards 2016. Photo: Yui Mok/PA Wire

Read more: 'I work on two shows that bring in massive revenue for RTE' - Kathryn Thomas says gender pay gap needs to be addressed

Former TV presenter Esther Rantzen was filmed on a dinner date with a charming Irish solicitor called John Wood. The elderly pair stole the hearts of viewers as they watched Rantzen talk about how much she missed her late husband.

She admitted she found it difficult to start dating again in her seventies.

"I've got plenty of people to do something with, but no one to do the nothing with," she said.

The pair were getting on extremely well until it came to the end, when producers asked if they would like to see each other again.

"For a lady of your advancing years, you make splendid company," he said, much to her dismay.

It was later revealed that John had sent her a dozen roses and invited her over to visit him in Ireland to make up for his faux-pas.

Herald

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