Soon to return to ITV is classic 1970's gameshow Mr and Mrs only with an All Star twist, we spoke to Fern Britton (one of the co-hosts) about the new series.
Fern Britton was a big fan of the original series of Mr & Mrs and is thrilled to be co-hosting the brand new series on ITV1:
“It’s funny because Phillip called and said they’re thinking of doing Mr & Mrs and shall we do it together. At that stage I didn’t know it was celebrities and I said “wow that would be such a laugh,” because it’s one of those shows that’s in your mind and we all have certain memories of it.
“I think if we revisited that series now it might look a bit dated, so I just hope that Phillip and I can bring it up to date and make it popular in people’s memories again.
“I remember Derek Bately [the original host] who was absolutely lovely and immaculate. You could imagine him smelling of wonderful soap and cologne, and he always had beautiful pink shirts on. I used to love the sound proofed booth where they’d have to go and put their big headphones on and people would get really agitated about the questions, which colour is your toothbrush and so on, I absolutely adored it. It’s the simplest format which just works so well and it’s so engaging – you can’t beat it.”
If Fern could hand pick anyone in the world to take part in the show, she would love to quiz the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh:
“I think they would make fascinating interviews and to ask them half a dozen of these little questions would be so very revealing. So if your Majesty is reading this I would love that. Or Charles and Camilla – that would be good wouldn’t it?”
From the couples that really are taking part in All Star Mr & Mrs, Fern is very excited about all of them but especially a certain few:
‘William Roach and his wife Sarah will be fantastic and David Coulthard will be interesting. Julie Goodyear and her husband will be brilliant because she blows me away - I mean she’s an icon isn’t she? So just to see how she’s reacting to married life, even though they have been together for a very long time. Lovely Shane Lynch from Boyzone will be good too, apparently he’s very particular and likes things very organised and very well sorted so I’m interested to hear about that. Vic and Nancy who are the sweetest couple and very funny. Their whole persona, well when we see them anyway, is just laughing and joking and bouncing off each other in a very happy way.’
Fern is very used to interviewing celebrities on This Morning but she reveals how this prime time show is different:
“I don’t really know any of them [guests on This Morning] really well. They come in and be guests, whereas the questions we’ll be asking on this are much more intimate and much more intrusive actually, much more revealing without being horrible hard questions. Everybody who says yes they’ll come and do it obviously has a sense of humour because otherwise they wouldn’t say yes.”
Fern doesn’t have any plans to bring her own husband Phil Vickery on to the show but admits it would be fun:
“It would be fun to play with my Phil actually. I believe we are very compatible and know quite a lot about each other, so I’d be surprised if he didn’t know quite a lot about me, and I didn’t know quite a lot about him. But it would be fun to have a go, we always sit and read those newspaper and magazine quizzes together which is just such fun.”
All Star Mr & Mrs sees Fern and Phil moving into a brand new Saturday night prime time slot and Fern explains how thrilled she is to be doing this with her good friend Phillip Schofield:
‘I’m delighted to be presenting the show with Phillip, I really am because we’re daytime partners obviously, but we didn’t know each other very well at all before we started doing This Morning together. The first day he came into the studio, we’d met each other maybe two or three times that was all, never had a conversation together and we just got on like a house on fire straight away. So I’m very very fond of him and very close to him. He’s one of my greatest friends and if I was in any kind of trouble I would ask for his advice. He is a very good sounding board and a very good friend so I’m very grateful to be working with somebody who I’m that close to and can enjoy being with.”
Despite this Fern admits to feeling slightly nervous:
“Well on the night, naturally, I’ll be nervous before we actually go in to the studio and record because that’s a natural thing. But I think the thing I’m most nervous about is people not enjoying it. I want people to really love it and have an hour of fun. I want them to really enjoy that bit of entertainment and have a laugh.”