The Circle

The Circle: Interview with Woody

Category: Press Pack Article

NAME: Woody
AGE: 18
OCCUPATION: Works in a pub
FROM: Brighton
RELATIONSHIP STATUS: Dating someone new
PLAYING AS: Himself, but not revealing his famous parents

IN A NUTSHELL: Woody is a typical 18-year-old from Brighton who loves music, festivals and reading. His day-to-day life is similar to his mates, except for one thing: his parents are famous. He’s the son of DJ and record producer Norman Cook and broadcaster Zoe Ball. Woody is going into The Circle for an amazing experience, and he won’t be telling the other players about his parents because he wants to do this for himself and not be pre-judged or to live in their shadow.

MOTIVATION FOR ENTERING THE CIRCLE: Woody has become used to people pre-judging or taking advantage of him because of who his parents are. He sometimes questions new friendships and whether people like him for him or because they want to get a gig ticket. He wants to enter The Circle and experience life without the baggage of being “Fatboy Slim’s son” or “Zoe Ball’s kid”.

STRATEGY: Woody is going to be himself. He’s a likeable warm, friendly guy and he hopes that by befriending everyone in The Circle he’ll become the most popular.

What is it about playing The Circle that appeals to you?
It seems like a blast, an opportunity to get my message and values about social media across to the world. And just a cool life experience.

What is your message about social media?
It's a great platform to use but it can be dangerous in the hands of people who are too young because it makes everyone compare themselves to everyone else a lot more than the last generation would have. You're never the best at anything because there is always someone better online. It's important to remember that you don’t always need to compare yourself to everyone else.

Can you describe your profile in The Circle?
I'm going to be friendly me, post lots of photos of me having fun rather than trying to look attractive. I'm just going to be Woody from Brighton.

Will you reveal your parents?
I seriously doubt it. I might tell one person if I really trust them. My whole life a lot of people have already known who I am before I meet them. This is a good chance to see if people actually like me on my own.

Do your parents know you are doing the show?
My parents do know I'm doing the show and they are supportive.

Have they given you any guidelines or advice to follow?
They have given me a lot to think about from past experiences and advice. They said that what you say on TV is out there forever and you can't unsay it and that once you share too much you never unshare it.

How easy do you think it's going to be to win people over just using text and photos?
As a reformed social media addict, I spend a lot of time talking to people by text and I think I'm alright at it, but we'll have to see.

Why do you call yourself a “reformed social media addict"?
I wasn’t really an addict, but I did used to spend lots of time on social media. Then I realised that I was just glued to my phone keeping up conversations I didn't really care about. So I decided to go outside a bit more and now I use my phone as little as possible.

What social media platforms do you still use?
Snapchat and Instagram.

How did you decide which pictures you're going to take into The Circle with you?
I didn't actually have enough because they had to be photos of just me. I tried to pick the ones that made me laugh.

Have you ever been in contact with a celebrity on social media?
A couple of celebrities wished me well after there was an article about me being bisexual in the news. I was like, 'Thanks but there are more important things in the world...' It was Matt Lucas and a couple of others. I just mentioned it in an article and it was everywhere the next day.

Do you think it will be helpful to be bisexual on the show?
Definitely, I find being bisexual helps talking to girls and it doubles the pool of people I can flirt with.

Does having famous parents put extra pressure on your appearance on The Circle?
I might get more attention outside of the show but there will be no real extra pressure on me inside The Circle because no one will know who they are!

Do you have a favourite social media star?
Phillip Schofield is quite funny.

And have you ever had a bad experience on social media?
Not so much a bad experience but one funny thing that happened to me, I once matched with someone on Tinder and realised they worked across the street from my house, and I could see them typing the reply!

Have you ever been catfished and drawn into talking to someone who wasn't who they said they were?
I carry on talking to them even though I know they are a catfish. What you do is go along with them and waste their time because they are not nice people.

Is there anything that really bugs you about social media?
I think it’s the fact that people seem obsessed with taking a picture of themselves at events or at certain social situations. It’s as if they use it to show-off that they were somewhere and if they don’t have photographic evidence of being somewhere then there was no point going.

Were you popular at school Woody?
I was a short, nerdy kid, who wasn't very popular. And then one day, I stopped playing video games, grew much taller, decided to go outside and became more popular.

How far will you go to win?
I'll never stop being myself because at the end of the day, I'm Woody and I don't want to be anyone else. I won't backstab anyone but I would like to win.

What would you do with the prize money?
I wouldn't spend it all immediately. I'd get a lot of musical equipment and start working on my dream. The dream is to gather a group of mates and make a record label.