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PARKINSON CHRISTMAS SPECIAL (article first published : 2004-12-24)

Watch out for a Parkinson Christmas Special on M-Net on December 26 at 21h35, when popular chat show host Michael Parkinson will talk to Joe Pasquale, Barbara Windsor, Rod Stewart and Lily Savage.

Joe Pasquale, winner of I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here swaps his jungle throne for a spell in Parkinson's spotlight in this Christmas special. He admits to Parkinson: "I'm so nervous, I'm more nervous about this than having all these rats on my head doing a number two. I've been trying to get on this show for twenty years. My agent's been phoning up every week saying 'Can you get Joe on the show?' Who knew all I had to do was sit on my backside in the jungle for three weeks?"

Now that he has been thrust back into the limelight Joe tells Michael that his ambition for the future would be a taking up a lead role in a West End musical.

Parkinson's next guest Barbara Windsor admits that heading into the I'm A Celebrity jungle wouldn't be for her.

She says: "Ooh blimey no, especially at my age, no. It's all the bits and pieces that I come with now, you know, hair extensions, blood pressure pills, I couldn't do that. I tell you, I wouldn't mind eating the worms or any of those kind of things, and the bugs that wouldn't worry me, it's snakes.”

Barbara opens up to Michael about her recent illness. She says: "One day I went to get out of bed and I just collapsed, because you go paralysed in the legs. You come out with all these different symptoms, but the worst thing is the depression... I've never had depression before...it's awful."

Legendary rocker Rod Stewart tells Michael that his daughter Ruby will be appearing on tour with him but he has big concerns about her following him into the business.

Rod says: "She'll be appearing (on tour), she's drop dead gorgeous. She wants to get into the business, but her mum and I are going to make her finish school. There's no rush. I don't want her to just be a teen success." He explains: "I had to wait till I was 26 with Maggie Mae ... I said `Wait till you've reached your mid twenties you'll have accomplished so much stage craft’."

Michael asks about Rod if he'll be attending Sir Elton John's rumoured wedding. Rod says that he thinks wedding are bells are unlikely to ring. "I think that is a load of rubbish, I mean I'm sure I would have been invited by now - I'd better be, Elton!"

Rod, who sings two numbers live on the show, says he backs Elton's views about live musical performances. "He's got a good point, I was going to come on and say 'that was actually live singing by Rod over there!' He had that outburst about Madonna, I'm not picking out Madonna but I'm absolutely sick of people miming."

Lily Savage closes the Christmas special with a tremendous version of Elvis Presley's Trouble in her last-ever TV appearance.

Parkinson Christmas Special will be aired on M-Net on December 26 at 21h35.




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