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TV

What drove these celebs to sign up for Celebrity Treasure Island

The battle for island supremacy is on.

By Ellen Mackenzie
You know the faces of these famous Kiwis braving the elements to win $100,000 for charity in the first Celebrity Treasure Island series in 10 years.
But what's behind their decision to put themselves out there? Their reasons are as varied as their careers.

Zac Guildford, 30

Former All Black Zac is no stranger to the spotlight. While he was hesitant about putting himself back in the public eye, he couldn't say no, explaining, "I can come back in a good light and show who I am away from rugby and the other stuff."

Shannon Ryan, 31

After growing up watching Celebrity Treasure Island, Shannon "didn't hesitate at all" and jumped at the chance to compete on the series. "I love the idea of taking us humans out of our creature comforts and throwing us somewhere that will make us uncomfortable."

Eric Murray, 37

He has two Olympic gold medals to his name, but Eric wouldn't say no to a Treasure Island trophy. "It would be nice," he says. "But I know that first and foremost, the reason everyone is actually here is to do this stuff for charity."

Lana Van Hout, 29

It's hard to believe this social media star was bullied growing up, but Lana often pinches herself seeing how far she's come. "It's pretty crazy," she says. "I'm really proud that I didn't lose who I was during that time – it didn't change me."

Matty McLean, 32

The first thing the Breakfast weatherman did when he found out he was going to be on the show was ask his colleague and 2007 champion Hayley Holt for advice. He tells, "I sit next to her every day at work, so that's great. She had some good tips!"

Rosanna Arkle, 30

With 4.7 million Instagram followers, you'd think The GC star is going to miss her phone, but it's quite the opposite. "I'm actually looking forward to a break," Rosanna explains. "I've been an influencer for over four years and never had an actual holiday."

Shane Cameron, 41

The humble gentle giant certainly has the muscle to take out the competition, but boxing legend Shane has one big weakness – food! "I'm used to eating every two or three hours," he chuckles. "Not being able to eat when I want will be a challenge."

Jodie Rimmer, 45

Filthy Rich actress Jodie has an extra incentive to stay in the competition. "I've got two kids who are seven and nine, Xavier and Theo, and I have a deal that if I get eliminated first then I have to give them each $100," she explains.

Ladi6, 36

She might be up against Olympians and All Blacks, but the songstress says people shouldn't underestimate her. "I'm going to just open myself up to be the counsellor so they don't want to let me go," she laughs. "They'll need me on an emotional level!"

Karl Burnett, 43

He missed out on being on the show in 2001 due to his hectic Shortland Street schedule, but this year Karl couldn't say no. "I was a bit apprehensive, but thought it could be a good challenge. Plus, I don't have to remember any lines!"

Barbara Kendall, 51

The Olympic legend won gold in 1992, but since having two daughters she's kept a relatively low profile. Of her girls' reaction, she says, "They were really excited about me doing the show, but my greatest fear is that I will embarrass them in public!"

Gary Freeman, 56

Rugby league great Gary will be the oldest contestant on the island this season, but he thinks he's pretty prepared to go all the way. Sleep deprivation and a lack of food? No sweat! "It's just like having a baby, isn't it?!" the father-of-two jokes.

Athena Angelou, 28

Firecracker Flava radio host Athena says the biggest skill she's bringing to the island is her entertaining personality! "We ain't got technology, so I can bring that good entertainment and energy so the morale is always uplifted."

Moses MacKay, 29

Calm, cool and collected Moses was excited to join the cast, but his mum sure wasn't! "She thought I was doing Love Island," he laughs. "Then when I told the boys from SOL3 MIO, they said I had to do it so they could laugh at me on TV!"

Lily McManus, 22

She burst on to the scene in a glitzy ball gown on The Bachelor NZ, but the reality TV "veteran" says this show is much more her style. "I don't have to talk about my feelings or fall in love. It's going to be an all-around good time."

Sam Wallace, 38

He spent 13 weeks in the gym sculpting his chiselled chest, but now Sam thinks it might have been a mistake! "I don't know how to catch fish or build a hut," he confesses. "If this was real life, I would die – but at least I'd die looking good!"

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