Emotional Spice Mum reunion for new TV documentary ends in tears…
22:05 GMT, 25 October 2012
Difficult topic: Mel B spoke about her troubled relationship with her mother for the first time on the documentary
The Spice Girls’ reunion for a major TV documentary was expected to be emotional and, after a decision to include their mothers in filming, that proved to be the case.
I’m told Victoria Beckham’s mum, Jackie Adams, spent over an hour in front of the cameras with her daughter in London recently, recounting never-heard-before details of the group’s rise to fame.
But that proved traumatic for bandmate (and sometime rival) Mel B, who has not spoken to her mother, Andrea, in four years following a bitter family feud. She broke down while talking on camera about what happened for the first time.
My Spice insider reveals: ‘The girls’ mums are such a big part of their story it was necessary to include them in the documentary. That obviously was going to prove very difficult for Mel B whose troubled relationship with Andrea is well documented.
‘She made the decision to record a very emotional interview talking about the row. It was very difficult for her and there were a lot of tears. We haven’t decided if it will be used in the programme yet.’
The ITV show, expected to be a key part of the channel’s Christmas programming, marks a rare public appearance for Victoria’s mother Jackie, who avoids publicity.
All five ‘Spice Mums’ were last in the spotlight in the band’s video for the 1997 charity single Mama.
Much of the filming for the programme took place as the girls rehearsed for their performance at the Olympics Closing Ceremony in August.
It will also follow the opening of their highly-anticipated musical Viva Forever, which opens in the West End next month.
ITV misses the Cowell factor
The surprising decision by the Fox network to renew the U.S. version of The X Factor for a third season is likely to cause headaches for ITV.
The move makes it increasingly unlikely that Simon Cowell will be able to return to the struggling talent show here for its landmark tenth series in 2013.
A senior show insider tells me: ‘We could look at changing the dates of The X Factor’s live shows so it didn’t clash with Simon’s American schedule, but ITV wants to keep the programme in the crucial months in the lead-up to Christmas. There’s no way he can do both shows.’
Disappointed: ITV hoped to bring Simon Cowell back as a judge on X Factor
Cowell’s return is seen as vital if the show is to take on Strictly Come Dancing in the ratings next year.
But the source adds: ‘Next year, with a refreshed judges’ line-up, we could have a real comeback. But securing Simon was a crucial part of that plan. His advisers think it will be impossible to make a weekly transatlantic trip and ITV doesn’t want to move the dates, so it’s hard to see what arrangement could be made.’
Adding to the woes is the fact that Gary Barlow is increasingly sending signals that this will be his last year on the judging panel, leaving a gap for a new male judge.
BBC2 can keep its cake and eat it
BBC2 bosses have won the battle to keep The Great British Bake Off, after a fight from BBC1 to poach it. Like The Apprentice, The Office and Gavin And Stacey before it, the Beeb’s main channel tried to engineer a move for the show.
The cult cooking competition, starring Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood (pictured), is now a mega-hit and is considered by many at the Corporation too popular for its second channel.
Too popular: The Great British Bake Off, featuring presenters and judges Sue Perkins, Mary Berry, Paul Hollywood and Mel Giedroyc, will stay on BBC2
My BBC source explains: ‘The show is already hugely popular, but it will quite simply explode with a move to BBC1.’
However, a BBC2 insider confirms: ‘We’ve been successful in keeping the series on BBC2 next year.’
The recent final — won by John Whaite — attracted 6.5 million viewers, making it one of BBC2’s most successful shows. Significantly, it rated higher than an episode of Holby City screening at the same time on BBC1.
Quick success: Cara Theobald secured the role of a kitchen maid on Downton Abbey on her first ever audition
Morale inside the BBC’s new newsroom in London’s Regent Street is even worse than at the height of the Dr David Kelly scandal, following director-general George Entwistle’s dire Commons select committee appearance.
‘It’s not just Newsnight presenters, reporters and producers who have hit rock bottom,’ my source says.
‘This has impacted on virtually everyone in the newsroom. It’s bad enough we left it to ITV to broadcast the Jimmy Savile allegations, but the response from our bosses has been diabolical. If this was another organisation, we would be taking them to task.’
Downton Abbey’s newest star Cara Theobold, who plays kitchen maid Ivy Stuart, secured the coveted role before even finishing her studies at London’s Guildhall School Of Music And Drama.
‘It was my first audition and I got the part, so it’s been a very surreal year,’ she tells me. ‘It is my first professional job.
‘My first day was my first day on a film set ever. I didn’t know where to stand or any of the terminology.
‘It was like being thrown into the deep end, so I had to learn very quickly. I can’t remember the day — it’s sort of a blur.’