Jon Hornbuckle catches up with Harry Derbidge to ask about life after TOWIE and his work with Stonewall.
Jon Hornbuckle caught up with former TOWIE star, Harry Derbidge at a recent showbiz event to get the lowdown on life after the show, his panto plans and working for Stonewall to represent young gay teenagers.
So So Gay: How are you finding life after TOWIE?
Harry: Life after TOWIE is different – I’m not going to give up on my dreams. I have lots of different things coming up, but I like to be secretive and I don’t like to blab about it. I prefer to keep it secret until it has actually happened and is on TV, so that people are surprised by it and enjoy it more. I have lots and lots coming up – I promise you, I’m not going nowhere.
It’s a shame because when people come up to me in the street now they ask me what I’m doing now and I have to explain to them that I am still doing really important things. I think it’s just when you leave something as important as TOWIE, people think you’ve died or that I’m nothing now. So I just cant wait to get back on to TV and out there meeting people.
You did a successful run on Panto last year, will you be returning anytime soon?
Not this year no. I would love to go back but it is just such hard work. With panto you literally do about three shows a day, seven days a week and by the last show each day you’re physically exhausted. It gets hard to put on such a big smile and be all cheesy when inside you just want to sleep, but I will definitely do it again in a few years.
How does it feel to be a role model to so many young gay guys who are probably just coming to terms with their sexuality?
You know I have never thought of myself as a role model or I’ve at least never claimed to be a role model, but it means a lot if people recognize that I try to change and help people. I work for a charity called Stonewall which is all about equality and being who you are and I really believe in that and I think more people should give it a chance.
Would you call Amy Childs a role model of yours?
I would say Amy is an inspiration in a different way, she is I guess but I don’t know. I guess she is an inspiration in my life because I’ve grown up with her but I am not sure.
What did you make of Mark Wright’s Hollywood show that failed expectations in ratings?
I really liked watching Mark’s latest show because I know Mark and I love Mark, he is really funny. We were always on good terms and I loved him.
In the past you said you were unhappy with your body and that you wanted to bulk up a bit… How do you feel now? Is that still the case?
I still want to bulk up but I haven’t been able to yet. This is an exclusive for you actually because Jodie Marsh has sent me over loads of her bodybuilding stuff, everything she used to get as big as she did and I am going to give it a go. If she can do it and she is a woman then I am sure I can do it.
But Jodie faced some criticism for those photos of her.
I quite like Jodie Marsh and I think she should go for it if that is what she believes. I don’t want to be a massive body builder; I don’t want to be ripped to the nines.
Is it for your own happiness or is it pressure from being in the public eye that has made you want to change your appearance?
I think it’s for my own happiness. If someone told me to get fat then I would tell them ‘up yours’, but I just want to do this for myself.