Meet “X Factor” host Steve Jones. He is so unknown in America he couldn’t get a table at Denny’s.
But that’s okay, he quips: “I eat at IHOP!”
With his quick wit and movie star looks, Jones, 34, is poised to become a major television personality on our side of the pond. He is a former model, not a former Sex Pistol (the iconic punk rock band also included a Steve Jones). But he’s still a pistol. He has hosted numerous programs in the UK, including “The Pop Factory Awards” and “99 Things To Do Before You Die.”
“I have done my time and I am ready now for a show of this magnitude,” he says. “But I can’t be complacent. I don’t know what the future holds.”
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We caught up with him in Los Angeles and asked a few questions so you could get to know him better. It’s likely you’ll be seeing a lot more of him.
Q: Are you the British Ryan Seacrest?
Because Ryan Seacrest’s career is so incredible. It would be gauche of me to say ‘Yes, I am the Brtish Ryan Seacrest.” I am just a host who works very hard at what he does and hopefully people will enjoy me.
Q: Do you use as much hair product?
I can’t comment on Ryan’s metrosexuality, but I really enjoy a night out. I enjoy the company of my friends. So the least time I spend in the bathroom, the better. I don’t want to be in there applying mascara or whitening the tips of my hair. I just want to get in, do what I have to do and get out. My bathroom routine is a very short process.
Q: Why do you think they picked you?
Because I am good. I am very professional. I completely immerse myself in whatever work project I am in. I have a very similar work ethic to Simon. It is all consuming. Nothing else in my life – which is exactly why I am single at 34.
Q: How does you mother feel about that?
She is absolutely fine because my youngest brother, Chris, is in a long term relationship and expecting his first child. So that takes the pressure off me for now. But she is happy about my career.
Q: Will your British accent bring anything to the show?
People seem to think I am a lot smarter than I am. They are like “You are so intelligent.” And I say “Well, I sound it, at least.” It’s a British thing. I got the job because Simon and Fremantle and Fox wanted to work with me. So I am just going to continue to be me. I haven’t changed anything yet.
Q: Give us a few fun facts about Steve Jones.
I can hold my breath for three minutes. I have what they call Olympic lungs, overly large lungs. And the irony is I hate swimming. So these lungs are wasted on me. And I don’t like the sea. I am scared of it. I would rather just sit on the beach and look at the ocean.
I am a Trekkie. I love “Star Trek”. Not ashamed to say it. I think “Star Trek: The Next Generation” is one of the greatest TV shows ever made. And I think a lot of us could learn from the teachings of jean Luc Ricard. Wonderful man.
I am obsessed with music. I do everything to music. I wake up and shower to it. I drive to it.
Q: Do you sing in the shower?
I do. I sing a lot. I have been in a couple of bands over the years.
Q: What would Simon say about your singing?
You know what? Maybe one day we will do something on the show. I would hope he would say “Actually you are quite a decent singer.” I can hold a tune.
Q: Is Simon as difficult to work for as he might seem?
No. Not at all. Obviously he will tell you if he is unhappy with something you are doing. But he has been very supportive. His advice has pretty much been “enjoy it.”
“THE X-FACTOR” PREMIERES WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, AT 8 PM ON FOX. SET YOUR DVR HERE.