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Jack Whitehall On 'Made In Chelsea' Rumours, His 'Hardships' And Film Writing Ambitions (INTERVIEW)

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"It's so annoying. Some 'Made In Chelsea' guy said I'm in his sitcom and I've never even heard of it," says Jack Whitehall, the young comedian who everyone seemingly wants a piece of.

Since getting his first TV break hosting E4 show 'Big Brother's Big Mouth' in 2008, the privately educated 24-year-old has quickly risen to stardom with appearances on '8 Out of 10 Cats', acting in applauded sitcom 'Fresh Meat' and even writing and starring in his own show, BBC Three's 'Bad Education'.

I mention that the 'Made In Chelsea' guy in question, Hugo Taylor, is now in the 'I'm A Celebrity' jungle. "Keep him there and then I won't have to do the show," he jokes.

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Jack Whitehall at the 2012 Brit Awards

Amid his TV appearances last year, Whitehall also went on tour, and now his first stand-up DVD is set for release, featuring an appearance from his showbiz agent father Michael Whitehall. What was the reasoning behind that?

"We were thinking of a way to start the show and we wanted to do something different and interesting so we just set up the camera with him and gave him free range, knowing that he would probably name drop Nigel Havers [his client], and he obliged."

Was he worried about what his father might say? "A bit, but you've got an edit so if he does say anything too offensive it can be trimmed. There was one story that he told that was definitely slightly litigious," he says affectionately.

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Jack Whitehall performing stand-up

I first met Whitehall (who's much calmer in real life than the characters he portrays on screen) in 2008, when he was working with Jason Manford on Channel 4's 'Tonightly' show. It's a programme which he remembers fondly and went on to host the second series under the rebranded name 'TNT'. "I liked doing that show, it was fun, I did my little VTs, I did my fake Jeremy Kyle thing, which I really enjoyed doing. I wish I'd done more with that. I tried to do more but they didn't want it."

Now Whitehall is focusing on a younger audience, who seem to have embraced his honest humour with open arms. "I'm pretty young and immature. I haven't done a grown up 'what's wrong the world' show yet - maybe when I do that it will alienate them all, but at the moment I guess it's just about having sex in your mum and dad's house and stuff like that, things that I can relate to."

There are of course people that don't find Whitehall funny - and I wonder how aware of this he is?

"Oh Jesus I don't know, there are people that don't really like me, but you don't want to get too tied up with it all or you'll get quite depressed."

He admits he sometimes has to bite his tongue, however. "With Twitter, you can @ the person if you read stuff," he says. "Sometimes there's trolling and you want to reply - but you know if you do, it will end in tears. And you're never going to work if you have a fight with someone on Twitter."

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Whitehall at the NME Awards

Whitehall has no doubt seen the backlash towards other tweeting comedians, such as Frankie Boyle and Ricky Gervais, who've come under fire for 'offensive' tweets.

Who does he think gets the most flack in his industry? "Michael [McIntyre], but I think that's fading now a bit because he's so good at what he does.

"It was very 'in' to have a pop at Michael. That's weird in itself, that having a pop at Michael has become a bit hack, isn't it? There's a lot of bitching but I don't really get involved or want to express my opinions about other stand-ups - it just looks so tacky."

I ask Whitehall where he gets his comedic inspiration from, when he has seemingly had a lack of hardships in his life and is generally regarded as 'posh'...

"I still have hardships, I still f*ck up in relationships and fight with parents and do stupid things, that's where the basis of most my comedy comes from," he says.

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Whitehall claims he's not posh

But then, less sincerely, he adds: "I'm not actually posh, I'm really rough and from the wrong side of the tracks. I grew up in Putney which is pretty rough. Putney Exchange shopping centre was a scary place, if you've seen mums in Waitrose arguing over the last reduced thing."

Right now he's back working on the second series of 'Bad Education', for which he's hoping there will be "a swimming gala" and "some episodes where we take the show out of the school". In five years' time, though, Whitehall's got even bigger ambitions: "I want to write a film. I need to think of the right idea and focus on that, I love writing." Love him or hate him, Whitehall's not going away soon.

'Jack Whitehall Live' is released on DVD on 19 November 2012

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