Joe Mott has rubbed shoulders with some of the biggest names in Hollywood and beyond thanks to his vocation as a celebrity columnist in London. And there is not much that has escaped his attention. So much so, that Mott has put pen to paper to write about his various celebrity encounters in the fictional tale titled “The A-Lister”.
In case you are wondering how much is fantasy and how much is fact, well, as he explains in the interview below, perhaps there has been just a slight exaggeration of the actual reality, but names have been changed so as to protect the identity of said stars who have found themselves to be the subject of gossip column inches… but what really goes on behind the velvet rope is much more salacious than what appears in print or online.
Here’s our interview with him…
Celebzter: Can you tell us about your book?
Joe: The A-Lister tells the story of showbiz reporter Jack Stamp who sets out to bust a celebrity sex ring. A shady mastermind is selling the stars to billionaires under threat of blackmail. He must try to hang on to his job, not get his hear broken and save beautiful singer Amy Standing whilst trying to land the scoop of his life – and stay alive. There’s also a little showbiz gem in every chapter for the keen-eyed reader.
Celebzter: When did you come up with the idea to put your life experiences as a showbiz columnist on paper?
Joe Mott: About four years ago I stopped working as a showbiz columnist and realised what an extraordinary world I had enjoyed access to. The people I dealt with on a daily basis were fascinating characters, egotists and extraverts. And not just the celebs – the journalists and media are every bit as self-obsessed and badly behaved. I wrote the book picturing it as a movie and thought it was a world people would be interested in.
Joe Mott: I wanted to write a novel, because I’m sick of people writing tell-all stories about celebs. Boring! The main plot involving murder and sex trade is pure fiction, but in each chapter I have included a true anecdote about a real celebrity, never published due to their extreme nature or legal technicalities. The names are completely changed of course or I’d be sued – but the events happened!
Celebzter: Do you think the stars are instantly recognizable in the tome?
Joe Mott: I’ve tried to be careful so as not to upset anyone – remember some of these people are my friends! – but I think readers will enjoy guessing who I’ve drawn inspiration from and exactly who I’m writing about in the anecdotes in each chapter. I think that’s half the fun – thinking “that must be him/her…right?”
Celebzter: Do you think in your experience from dealing with celebrities, that there is a difference between American and UK ones? If so, what is the biggest difference in the way they behave?
Joe Mott: Access to American celebrities is always much tougher, but when you do get to them, they tend to have far better manners and are more professional than many in the UK.
Tom Cruise is brilliant at making you feel at home, whereas others – Elton John for example – make it very clear they don’t want to be talking to you. Simon Cowell has always been a gent too. Overall, I would say the Americans treat it like a job, whereas many Brit stars act as if it’s a burden.
Celebzter: Who has been the best celebrity you have ever met and why?
Joe Mott: That’s easy. Muhammad Ali. Ali did a red carpet event and rather than ask him questions, every journalist there stuck their hand out. He kind of grabbed my thumb, I count that as a handshake. He’s more than celebrity, he is part of history. I’ve met most of the big names, but they are all just people. Other than Christina Ricci, who I’ve always fancied. She’s the only celeb I’ve ever got tongue-tied with.
Celebzter: And the worst?
Joe Mott: Vinnie Jones was pretty unrewarding. I wanted to like him, but he was sullen, monosyllabic, vaguely rude, uninterested and uninteresting.
Celebzter: What was the best part about your job as a showbiz columnist?
Joe Mott: Free booze, access to clubs and premieres for free, taxis everywhere, an expense account, invites to every gig going, being flown to the most glamorous places in the world and then being paid to write about it all.
Celebzter: And the worst?
Joe Mott: Late nights, pretending to be interested in vacant celebs who’d rather be talking to someone else, getting up early with a hangover to go to work, having no time for friends and travelling the world without ever having the time to see any of it. But of course I can’t complain – most people have real jobs that really count for something.
Celebzter: Can you share with us a fabulous celebrity anecdote that no one knows.
Joe Mott: Whilst relaxing at home, Simon Cowell will open as many as 10 bottles of Crystal before he finds one that tastes “right” to him. How the other half live, eh?!
To purchase your copy of Mott’s first hair-raising, spine-tingling tome, simply click here.