In the run-up to the official announcement, a steady stream of celebrities were spotted arriving at Brisbane airport, while others were coyly stoking their own speculation online.
Now, with the line-up revealed, here are this year’s contestants.
I'm a Celebrity 2019 contestants
ITV had apparently been trying to secure Kardashian clan member and former Olympian gold medallist Caitlyn Jenner for years. They finally convinced the 70-year-old to take part by offering a substantial amount of money (rumoured to be £500,000, the biggest fee in the show’s history).
Jenner seemed to confirm her attendance in the jungle last week to The Sun at a Hollywood party, replying “I am not allowed to talk about this until next week” to a question about her involvement.
Jenner has taken part in I’m a Celebrity before, in the 2003 American series as “Bruce”, prior to her gender transition. Then 48 years old, Jenner made it through to the final week alongside Joan Rivers’s daughter Melissa, comedian John Melendez and Jennifer Lopez’s ex Cris Judd, who went on to win.
The stand-up comedian and narrator of Ex On The Beach flew in from Dubai on Monday, telling photographers at arrivals that he was particularly scared of snakes. “We don’t have snakes in Ireland,” he explained, “and you should never trust an animal without shoulders who can’t shrug.”
The EastEnders star, who played Lauren Branning from 2010 to 2018, was the fourth contestant to fly into Brisbane Airport last week. When asked about I’m a Celebrity, the 27-year-old said she was there for a “girl’s trip”. It wasn’t even convincing at the time.
The Big Brother star and BBC Radio 1 missed her show last Thursday to fly out to Australia. Again, it was easy for media-watchers to put two and two together.
Former Arsenal footballer Ian Wright is currently a pundit for BBC and ITV Sport, and he’s the early favourite to win the show, with Ladbrokes offering odds of 5/2.
Last year’s winner Harry Redknapp told The Sun that while his friend has the “Wright stuff”, Wright’s “temper” might blow his chances. Wright doesn’t think so. “I’m much older and wiser. To be honest, nothing gets me angry any more. I’ve been looking forward to this for so long.”
After flying to Japan to watch England lose 12-32 to South Africa last weekend, the former England player (who retired from rugby in May) is now an MMA fighter and was the fifth contestant to touch down at Brisbane yesterday.
The 34-year-old will certainly be among the fittest contestants to hack their way through the jungle, and this isn’t his first time at the rodeo: Haskell competed in the 2002 series, though he only lasted a week.
Producers hope that the Girls Aloud singer and 34-year-old mum-of-one will add intrigue to the competition by opening up about her ongoing feud with former band member Cheryl. Only last week, Coyle said she was “never really friends” with the former Miss Tweedy, despite being a bridesmaid at her wedding to Ashley Cole.
“Nadine is a big name and ITV was keen to get her,” a source close to the show told The Sun. “Her link to Cheryl makes her an even more exciting prospect.
“It’s no secret there’s no love lost between them, and Nadine is refreshingly honest about what went on from her perspective. And I’m a Celebrity could well be the start of something big again for her.”
At 26 years old, the Capital FM presenter and DJ is one of I’m a Celebrity’s youngest contestants, and is currently weathering a storm online after now-deleted tweets surfaced in which he dismissed the music of South Korean pop group BTS as “just noise”.
Kemp, who is the son of actor and musician Martin Kemp, apologised profusely on Instagram. The situation is already reminiscent of one in 2017, when YouTube blogger Jack Maynard was hauled out of the jungle only two days into the competition after racist and homophobic messages were found on his Twitter page.
When Good Morning Britain presenter Kate Garraway was quizzed about the jungle recently, she remained enigmatic. “Even if I was doing it, I couldn’t say I was doing it,” she said. “And if you’re not doing it you can’t say you’re not doing it.” (This was less convincing.)
“I don’t like heights,” she added. “I don’t like the dark. I don’t like camping.” She’s going to have a great time.
The singer won 2017’s X Factor as part of the RnB group Rak-Su, and was (until recently) romantically partnered with Gabby Allen (Love Islander and personal trainer). He has taken part in the series before, in 2002, and fuelled rumours of appearing in the show once more after failing to appear with his fellow band members on Friday to turn on Leeds’s Christmas lights.
I'm a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! returns to ITV on Sunday November 17