Report: Holly Montag joining 'I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!'
By Reality TV World staff, 06/08/2009
One Montag sister apparently wasn't enough for NBC's I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!.
The Hills regular Holly Montag -- the younger sister of departed I'm a Celebrity contestant Heidi Pratt -- will be joining the cast of the three-week reality competition, NBC reportedly told Access Hollywood on Monday. Holly will reportedly not be part of Monday night's I'm a Celebrity broadcast but will begin appearing on the show "shortly."
Heidi and her husband Spencer Pratt were part of I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!'s original 11-person cast however The Hills couple began threatening to quit the show shortly after it began taping on Saturday, May 30 and then finally followed through with the threat after the show's live premiere aired on Monday, June 1.
NBC had subsequently confirmed that Holly was set to join the show along with Daniel Baldwin, the brother of I'm a Celebrity cast member Stephen Baldwin, but had not clarified whether their additions had been planned prior to Heidi and Spencer's departure. (I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!'s British editions regularly feature one or two additional celebrities joining the competition after it has begun.)
Daniel -- the older brother of I'm a Celebrity cast member Stephen Baldwin -- ended up joining the show on Tuesday night, but Heidi and Spencer allegedly decided they had made a "big mistake" and began attempting to return to the show, which seemed to throw Holly's participation into limbo.
After agreeing to let them attempt to return, I'm a Celebrity announced that in addition to allegedly needing the other cast members' permission to return, Heidi and Spencer would also have to survive a night in "The Lost Chamber," a critter-filled structure the couple had briefly entered while participating in a food challenge before they quit.
According to weekend reports, the couple subsequently entered a critter-free version of the chamber late Thursday afternoon and successfully remained in it until about 6:30AM on Friday, but things then took a still-unexplained turn for the worse and the couple quit I'm a Celebrity again when Heidi was taken to a local hospital for an undisclosed medical emergency on Saturday.
Exactly what led to Heidi's hospitalization remains publicly unannounced and has now apparently become the focus of a dispute between the couple and I'm a Celebrity's producers.
According to a series of Saturday night Twitter posts by fellow The Hills regular Stephanie Pratt -- who appears to have gotten her information from her older brother Spencer -- NBC "tortured" Heidi and Spencer "as if they were criminals" and "locked" the couple "in a dark room for 3 days [with] no food or water" during the chamber challenge.
However I'm a Celebrity's producers are denying the claims and saying that the couple -- who unlike the rest of the show's cast, got to spend most of last week in hotel rooms after quitting -- actually only spent one night in the room and were provided with food and water while there.
"Accusations that Heidi and/or Spencer were harmed in any way are untrue," a source told Extra on Sunday. "They quit the show last Monday; stayed in a hotel for 3 days. Then on Thursday, they re-joined show and entered 'The Lost Chamber.' They stayed in [the] Chamber from 4:30PM until 6:30AM."
"The environment in 'The Lost Chamber' was not in any way harmful or dangerous; no critters, just a few ordinary bugs," the Extra source added. "They were indoors -- never in any danger or facing life-threatening situations. Absolutely no one is or was being held against their will."
Where the couple subsequently spent the period between their Friday morning exit from the chamber and their Saturday departure from the competition still remains undisclosed.
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"ITV Studios, producers of the series, state that press reports at this time are untrue," the production company said in the statement. "ITV has been producing this format around the world for many years and the health of the celeb participants are of the utmost importance. A medic and a doctor are present at the location at all times for all participants. All allegations of the celebrities being deprived of food and water are completely untrue."
Heidi reportedly left the hospital on Sunday. She was diagnosed with a "stomach infection" that is "not considered serious," according to an Access Hollywood source.