Gladiators’ Wolf reveals ‘lame’ reason his son wasn’t allowed to take part in new series | The Sun

GLADIATORS legend Wolf has revealed his son Dean was rejected from starring in the BBC reboot for a "lame" reason.

Superfit Dean, 34, had hoped to follow in his father's footsteps by going head to head with contenders like Wolf – real name Michael Van Wijk – did in the 90s.

But that will not happen, at least for the first series, after his application was rejected.

Speaking to The Sun in an exclusive interview from his home in New Zealand, Michael, 70, said: "I got a lame excuse back. They said to me 'your son's not a UK resident so we couldn't consider him'.

"But seeing he was born in Orpington Hospital and he's got a UK passport… just because he's living abroad with me. They said they didn't realise and will consider him for next year."

Dean lives close to his dad in Auckland, but Michael insisted he'd happily fly back to the UK and stay with relatives while filming takes place.


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It's the only rejection the family faced in the build up to the new series; Michael was overlooked to host the show too.

Instead, the BBC has gone with the presenting duo of Bradley Walsh and son Barney.

"I think they're trying to get away from the old image," said Michael. "They want to put their own stamp on it.

"I wanted to be a presenter on it then they took Bradley Walsh and his son. I never got a reply when I contacted them."

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Missing out on a place on the roster could end up being a blessing for Dean.

Earlier this month we revealed two of the new gladiators have suffered serious injuries and been forced to withdraw from the show.

Comet, real name Ella-Mae Rayner, broke her ankle and foot and has had to undergo an operation to rebuild her foot.

And Sabre, aka Sheli McCoy, tore her hamstring.

Former gymnast Comet said: “Life is not about how hard you hit, it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving – right now, this quote couldn’t ring truer.

“During the filming of one of the games I sustained a severe foot injury.

“Multiple scans and X-rays later I found out that I had broken my ankle and foot in multiple places, including the talus and something known as a lisfranc injury, ruptured 3 ligaments and dislocated a bone.

“I am now resting up following an operation to fix my foot and stabilise the broken bones.

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“This is just a minor blip in the road and ignites the fire in me to come back better and stronger than ever before. ”

Visit Cameo to get a personalised video message from Wolf.

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