An Eastbourne talent agency is in the limelight as Channel 4 show Lookalikes returns to television screens for a full series.
The semi-scripted comedy series follows Lookalikes, an Eastbourne-based talent agency which specialises in representing celebrity doppelgängers.
The show returned for a full series last Friday (April 8) following a successful pilot last year and features several well-known places from around the town.
Lookalikes owner and David Beckham impersonator, Andy Harmer said, “It’s kind of based on my agency and the daily running of it. It highlights some of the issues and situations that go with being a lookalike, good and bad. People don’t really realise it, but the life of a lookalike is determined by the real celebrity. Sometimes that can lead to some pretty odd circumstances. Sometimes you get asked to do weird things.
“There were a lot of true stories in the pilot, the reality of me taking the Chippendoubles to America. David Brent working in an office for his box company, that’s true. Gordon Ramsay trying to get a girlfriend, that’s true. There was a lot more reality to it than people realised.”
The agency represents more than 1,000 professional lookalikes including Andy himself.
Andy said, “It started for me in 1998, when David Beckham came onto the scene. He and Posh had just got together, people started saying to me in the street that I looked like him. And I did some photos with a friend in Eastbourne who’s a photographer, and we made up a story, and gave it to a newspaper. After that, people kept asking me to do stuff. I signed up to an agency and that was it really.
“I’ve had a few different companies and after trying different things, everyone kept asking me for lookalikes, so it seemed like a natural progression to start my own agency.
“I’ve got two Justin Bieber’s at the moment, one is Spanish and the other is French. It doesn’t quite work. Brad Pitt has got a Scouse accent.”
During his career Andy has worked in film and television, sometimes alongside David Beckham himself.
Andy said, “We’ve done the same commercials a few times, but since the first time, on a Pepsi commercial, every time he turns up on set I have to leave and be out of his way. I’ve never really known why. Don’t know if it was something I did that upset him.
“Maybe it was my football skills, I dunno. In the end I stopped doing those things because of that.
“I’ve been doing the lookalike thing for so long I’ve sort of lost heart in the Beckham thing. Even though it’s still great, turning up at parties and having your photo done, if you’ve done something for half of your life you could start to get a bit bored of it.
“And I want to do something that gives me a bit of credibility. Something that’s mine - that might give me life after Beckham. You never know how it’s going to go.”
The second episode airs on Channel 4 on Friday night (April 15).
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