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Fingers crossed for another towering success

STEVE JONES is not just a pretty face. He is a former model and he's apparently had a good success rate with some of the most glamourous women in showbiz. However, there are brains beneath those good looks.

For not only does his quick wit make for highly entertaining interviews while he's hosting weekend morning show T4 but, he reveals, he's also helped to write scripts for every show he's been on.

"That's one of my things," the chirpy Welshman says. "I get a lot of pleasure from doing that."

It's telling that he's a lot more interested in the writing side than being the "face" of a show, dismissing male grooming as a waste of time.

"My grooming regime? I don't think I have one! I use Head And Shoulders Sensitive, and Sanex to wash my face and other bits. I don't want to be spending much time in the bathroom when I could be out socialising with my friends. That's madness," he says.

Jones's new project is 101 Ways To Leave A Gameshow, a new prime-time quiz show which takes place on a 100-foot tower. The winner can bag £10,000 (e12,160), but the losers leave the tower in a variety of humiliating ways, such as having to walk the plank into the pool below, or being dragged away by a helicopter.

The 33-year-old is one of the show's principal writers as well as its presenter.

He says: "I don't just fly in, ask some questions then leave. I'm involved from the start, and I'm there for the long haul."

Filming, which took place in Argentina, was a really long haul. The shoot took seven weeks instead of four because things kept going wrong. The building of the set was delayed, the volcanic ash eruption meant the contestants were held up in England, and one day two men tried to carjack Jones.

"We were on our way to the site one morning and this guy ran out in front of our car," he says. "Me and Kevin, my make-up artist and friend, were in the back. Our driver hit the brakes and, while the car slowed down, this guy's friend ran out of nowhere and tried to throw a brick through our windscreen.

"Luckily, he was a complete idiot and missed the windscreen and hit the side of the car."

Jones used the time waiting for contestants to work on scripts and have time out in Buenos Aires bars where people didn't recognise him.

"It's nice just to relax and to know when you go out that nobody's going to come and sit at your table and join you for drinks," he says. "I don't mind people recognising me, it's never bothered me as long as they're polite."

Jones went on with the show despite the setbacks. The crew had found Brits living in Argentina to take part while the other hopefuls were stranded in England.

When they eventually arrived and found themselves teetering on the edge of the tower, the contestants must have wished their flight was delayed forever.

"They have to pick what they think is the right answer and nobody knows if they've got the wrong answer until they're standing on the edge of a 100ft drop and then I inform them," Jones explains.

"I don't want to sound horrible, but it's absolute bliss to watch people cack themselves. Some people are brave and some people absolutely break down and are crying and screaming for their mothers."

101 Ways To Leave A Gameshow begins on BBC One on July 10


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