Boy Band Member Faces Fear Factor
Dot Net, 4 July 2002

Richard “Abs” Breen, former member of boy band 5ive was recently in Cape Town to shoot a UK celebrity episode of Fear Factor. This took place on the same set currently being used to shoot the South African version of the show...

In an innovatory move, Endemol South Africa, producers of the local series of Fear Factor (and Big Brother) are facilitating the production of the show for various European affiliates. The company is not only providing their partners with an effective and affordable option to shooting in snowbound Europe, but is also giving South Africa a boost by showing off our production expertise and highlighting some fabulous coastal locations.

Richard, who turned 23 this past Sunday (all the best, mate!), enjoyed his Mother City trip – but it was nothing like what he expected. The Londoner had a close encounter with chicken heads in a bucket of maggots (which sound like unusually harsh Fear Factor ingredients) and was suspended 90 metres off the ground between two cooling towers. The star, who once screamed so loud after jamming his finger in a car door that he had security rushing over to see what the all the fuss was about, found the going tough.

“When I got invited to South Africa I thought it was ideal,” he said. “I thought I could do some charity work for Children In Need, get a suntan and go back to the UK looking nice and brown. But it turned out to be freezing, I’ve still got dark circles under my eyes and I risked my life!” Sounds like another day on the set of Fear Factor to us!

5ive were one of the most popular and progressive of the boy bands before their recent demise. They sold six million copies of their two albums (1998’s Five and 1999’s Invincible) and they’re currently garnering equally impressive figures for their Greatest Hits package. The group had seven Top 5 UK singles, including two number ones (“Keep On Movin’” and “We Will Rock You”, a cover of the Queen classic that’s sold about 650 000 copies).

After forming in 1997, the five-piece set about creating colourful pop music with an edge, and threw hip hop, garage, disco and rock into their music mix. Sadly they bowed out of the music game early in the new millennium, but only after winning the 2000 Brit Award for Best Pop Act and taking part in the biggest ever live music concert with Oasis – 270 000 people turned up for the Rock In Rio festival!

Richard’s music career is far from over. Not only does he play guitar, piano and drums, but he deejays (his first DJ name was “The Genie”, but he’s currently known as “Cheeky Monkey”) and recently graced the most expensive DJ booth in the world at London’s Ministry Of Sound. Under the guidance of Pop Idol judge Simon Cowell and in tandem with a host of top name producers, Abs has been working on his debut solo album, and his first single “What You Got” is released on 12 August – it’s apparently got “summer smash” written all over it.