FORMER Hollyoaks star Alex Reid was greeted by boos as he was unveiled as a contestant on the final series of Celebrity Big Brother.
Football hardman turned actor Vinnie Jones, former Hollywood madam Heidi Fleiss and actress Stephanie Beacham were among the other famous faces taking part in the Channel 4 show.
Singer Dane Bowers and cage fighter Reid should have plenty to talk about. Reid, who played womanising footballer Jason Cunliffe in the Mersey soap, is dating Bowers’ ex, Katie Price.
According to reports they came to blows during a New Year’s Eve party at the model’s home. The other housemates are actor Stephen Baldwin, Ronnie Wood’s ex-girlfriend Ekaterina Ivanova, glamour model Nicola T, rapper Lady Sovereign, singer Sisqo and singer/producer Basshunter.
Jones is reportedly the highest paid housemate allegedly earning £350,000 for taking part – twice as much as last year’s eventual winner Ulrika Jonsson.
Bookie Ladbrokes today made Jones the 5/2 favourite to win the show.
Spokesman David Williams said: “Vinnie looks like the perfect Big Brother star. He’s got attitude, personality and is likely to shake the house to its foundations.”
Baldwin, Bowers and Basshunter – real name Jonas Erik Altberg – are all at 7/1 with Ivanova and Reid at 8/1. Beacham is the outsider with Ladbrokes offering odds of 33/1. The theme for the series is “hell lies in others” and a show spokeswoman said tasks during the next 27 days will be designed to “torment and tease” the best and worst out of the celebrities.
Cross-dressing cagefighter Reid, who appeared in Hollyoaks from 2001-2002, arrived dressed demurely in a coat, shirt and trousers. And he denied reports of a fight with Bowers saying: “Categorically no. I wasn’t even aware there was a fight until afterwards.”
Responding to the boos he added: “This is why I’m here – to hopefully change these boos to cheers.”
Once inside Nicola T instantly greeted Reid with a kiss and asked if he had been booed.