“He’s Gotten to Know Me for Me”: How ‘I’m a Celeb’ Brought Jack Vidgen Closer to His Dad

I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Outta Here is infamous for bringing Australians closer to their favourite celebrities and in the case of former Australia’s Got Talent winner, Jack Vidgen, his time on the show gave us another side to the singer.

On Sunday’s episode of the hit series, Vidgen was brutally ejected (literally) from camp, after losing out to former AFL player Travis Varcoe and comedian Ash Williams.

“I was kind of expecting her to say, ‘Jack’ and press the buzzer,” Vidgen said of the booting in an interview with The Latch. “But it all just happens so quickly that there was no time to take it in.”

Unfortunately for viewers of the show, the ability to vote each week has been removed due to the global pandemic and a new pre-recorded format, meaning Vidgen had a premature exit, however, fans believe that he would have lasted longer with the more audience voting system.

“I guess you never really know with audience votes,” the 24-year-old said. “But the messages I have received on social media has been overwhelming. Just reading everyone’s tweets and messages and comments, it’s just been so great.”

Although going into the jungle meant a win for charity, Vidgen said he also went in for the “experience”.

“I got so much out of it,” he said. “People are getting to know me for me.”

Before going into the jungle, Vidgen said that people only knew him “from what he looked like and my voice”.

“I think it’s just been really lovely that people can see that there’s a personality behind someone’s public persona,” he admitted. “When there are so many perceptions of you, it’s nice to do something where you can set the record straight.”

Although his time was short in the jungle, the former Voice star saw the value in raising awareness for his chosen charity, the Trish Multiple Sclerosis Research Foundation. A cause very close to his heart.

“I was so young and I don’t think I understood what it meant for his life,” Vidgen said of the time he learned his father, Steve, had MS. “Like I said on the show, you’ve always got this fear. How long do I have this person?”

“For our family, it’s certainly been a journey over the years. He’s kind of gone up and down. There’s been a time where he’s only been in a wheelchair and then he’s been able to get a walking stick and then he was able to walk again. Now he’s mostly in a mobility scooter.”

As for their relationship, I’m a Celeb has brought the father and son closer together.

“Honestly, we’re speaking on the phone more than ever because he’s in North Queensland and I’m in Sydney, so it’s been really beautiful because I’ve never lived with him and he’s gotten to see me for me as well because I haven’t been in close proximity to him for years.”

One of the youngest campmates this year, Vidgen learned a lot about himself.

“While I was in there, I realised a lot about my life because you have so much time for reflection,” Vidgen said. “You realise things about your relationship in life and in your family and opened up about my mum and our relationship over the years. It’s been really healing for us.”

Now that his time in the jungle has come to an end, Vidgen hopes that former The Block star, Jess Eva, will take home the top prize.

“She made me feel so comfortable while in there and she really brought out a lot of the conversations that I probably wouldn’t have had in there.”

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