Im A Celebs fake set unveiled – from man-made waterfall to secret cave

I’m A Celeb is well known for gathering together a bunch of celebrities and dropping them into the middle of the Australian jungle.

But despite the celebs having to face critters, rodents and crocodiles in the series’ famous challenges, things are reportedly not all they seem on set.

The jungle background of camp is actually in Springbrook National Park in New South Wales, with the crew building a set specially designed for the campmates.

The celeb contestants have various features on their campsite, including a fire pit, a waterfall and a pond, but not everything is as real as it looks.

The waterfall where campmates shower is reportedly actually a man-made water feature that can be turned on and off.

Former campmate Lauren Booth revealed in 2006: “The waterfall, like the pool beneath it, was not part of the jungle at all, but a man-made creation”.

She told the Daily Mail: “Unless, of course, 'real' rainforest waterfalls get turned off between three and six every afternoon.”

That same year it was also discovered by David Gest that the some of the rocks dotted around the camp were also false.

Some of the rocks were discovered to be made of papier-mache and hollow inside so that the camera crew could hide inside them.

A source close to the show previously addressed the fake set, explaining that certain things have to be built by hand, “because they don't naturally occur where one would like them to”.

One task the campmates find themselves doing daily is collecting wood for the fire, but the crew make this considerably easier for them by scattering dried and chopped wood for them to find.

The celebrities aren’t even properly exposed to the elements either, as the campfire they sit around is covered by a canopy.

There's a retractable canopy 50 ft in the air above the camp, preventing the stars from getting soaked and keeping the campfire lit.

However, it's not completely weather-proof nor does it cover the whole of camp, while it is said to leak if the rain is too heavy.

A source insisted to The Daily Mail: "A lot of the camp is not under shelter — it's not like the roof at Wimbledon!"

In 2016, the crew also added a secret cave near to the shower – this year, it was used as Matt Hancock and Seann Walsh’s mole HQ when they were nominated to be the camp moles.

Its existence also opens many possibilities for campmates, with producers suggesting the room can be used for illicit purposes.

Producer Oli Nash told The Mirror: "Next door is a secret cave which will be hidden behind a locked door. It will be used a number of times throughout the series for our celebrities.

"Inside it is just a plain cave with a bench but we will be using it throughout the series for various events. The floor’s a bit hard – but it can be used for romance.”

One thing that is real though are the animals the celebrities encounter in camp and in the challenges.

Around 250,000 cockroaches, 153,000 crickets, 500,000 mealworms, 400 spiders, 500 rats, and 30 snakes are used for each series.

The bugs are bred by an animal specialist in a bug factory and bought by the show.

And while the crocodiles seen in the trials look very menacing, they are reported to have had their jaws tied shut to prevent them biting.

Similarly, the water spiders, Australian scorpions and rhino beetles used can’t bite or sting.

It's not always plain-sailing for the crew though, with there being a shortage of cockroaches in Australia in 2012 because of weather conditions.

The following year witchetty grubs were not bred successful, it is said that one year saw producers paying locals $5 for every spider they could find in desperation.


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