I have a story to tell that I can’t believe I haven’t shared yet. It will be of particular interest to my readers with young children. I was having a read of BabyMac‘s blog this morning and she was chatting about Horrible Histories and the goodness of ABC3 and it reminded me about the time a few years ago when my son was on Prank Patrol!
Yep you heard me right. My boy, Ned, was chosen from thousands of entrants to be the Purple Ninja on a Prank Patrol special episode. He, like just about every other 11-12 year boy in the country, was a huge Prank Patrol fan and when he heard of the competition he was like a man on a mission. Having a few gymnastics skills up his sleeve was a bonus. He asked me to film him at his gym club one afternoon so he could enter. He did a round off back flippy thing (yes that’s the technical term) and finished with a neat little ninja pose. I honestly didn’t think too much about it. He did the rest himself – uploaded it to Youtube and sent it off.
Months later we got a phone call from the ABC saying Ned had won. Can you imagine the excitement in our household?! And here’s what he won – an all expenses trip to Perth for two days of filming, hanging out with Scotty Tweedie (faint!), watching the crew and participating in the behind the scenes action and being the Purple Ninja for a special end of season episode. However, only one parent could go with him. It wasn’t me. No, I didn’t get to hang out with Scotty (insert sad face). On a very sad note, a close friend of mine, passed away from ovarian cancer days before and her funeral was during the filming. So it was Jud and Ned off to Perth for a whirlwind two day entree into the world of television and celebrity.
Let me just start by saying, Scott Tweedie is a legend. He is one of the most down to earth, charming, supportive, epic human beings you could ever meet. And he made my boy feel super special! Not that I met him obviously, but this was the story my fellas told me when they got home. On arrival, he welcomed them, hung out with Ned like he was a mate, signed a million autographs, gave him advice and was just a general good guy. Pretty rare in the industry right?!
So the first day was spent doing a behind the scenes tour of how a Prank Patrol episode is filmed. Ned got an insight into the world of making television and his first words when he returned were – it was so boring. Yep, hours of waiting, retakes, make-up, being uncomfortable. But the second thing he said was that it was the most awesome experience of his life! The second day was his turn. He was a new character called the Purple Ninja. If you’re familiar with the show at all, the Ninjas are the trouble making little people who are always pranking Scotty and others. Ninjas!!! *shaking fist to the air* Anyway the ninjas join up with Ned’s character in this episode and turn on Scotty. It finishes with the Purple Ninja riding off into the sunset with a mini Scotty to start his own show. It was all a bit silly but so much fun.
It was over a year before the episode was shown on television. A year of anxious waiting. And then the episode was aired. And guess what?! Ned’s character was on for a total of about 30 seconds. He was so disappointed. But like we said, he got an experience that not many get the chance to have and an all expenses paid trip to Perth and hung out with Scotty like he was his besty. That’s something pretty special and to do this day whenever he wears his Prank Patrol t-shirt out, he is treated like a rock star.
Here’s a little inside titbit : Did you know they sometimes re-film the ending. Quite often the prankees realise early what is going on and so they film a ‘fake’ surprised reaction. Also, the kids who are the prankers are almost always actors who are with agencies.
One of these days I will get to Perth. It looks like such a beautiful city. In the mean time I’ve got these great photos from their adventure.
Do you and your kids watch ABC3 or Prank Patrol? Have you ever had a celebrity moment? Ned will remember his for the rest of his life.