WANNA-Ben - Fridays, at 10pm

The little New Zealand TV show that grabs international headlines and huge international guests returns to TV3 with a highly-anticipated second series.

Ben Boyce, the world’s biggest “wanna-be”, is back with six celebrity-laden, gag-packed episodes of WANNA-BEn made up from a smorgasbord of skits, parodies, pranks and interviews.

Each episode of WANNA-BEn follows Ben’s attempts to live the life of someone rich and famous. For Series 2 Ben interviews and emulates the likes of Talk Show host Jerry Springer, “The Fonze” Henry Winkler, Rockstar Bret Michaels, Wrestler Hulk Hogan, Playmate and Reality TV star Kendra, the real Erin Brockovich and many more.

See the Guests For 2012 Photogallery here.

“It was great to get the opportunity to do a second series and make a few tweaks to the show” says Ben. “I’m just thankful I put my name in the show’s title otherwise I’m sure I would’ve been replaced!”

In mid-2011, the former host of Pulp Sport who lost his trademark dreadlocks to raise money for the Telethon for Christchurch, spent three weeks traveling around America and somehow managed to chat to 13 international stars and find out what it would take for an everyday New Zealander to be like them.

“I was pretty surprised I got to talk to these people.It’s awesome they gave me time out of their busy lives. Well except for Gary Busey – that dude is nuts!”

Ben’s weird encounter with the eccentric Hollywood actor is just one of the many celebrity interview highlights of the series. “I think I asked Gary about two questions, then spent the next 45 minutes wondering if he was actually insane or just screwing with my head! At one point he tickled me for about a solid minute then made me drop my pants to check if I’d peed myself. He also attempted to burn me with his cigar a bunch of times and even tried to make me sit on some weird sex toy!”

During his informal chats, Ben learnt a lot of the secrets to being like his celebrity idols. Jerry Springer taught him the one and only thing you need to know to be a TV host, Bret Michaels shared his secret to winning the ladies and Kendra explained the many benefits of breast implants.

Kendra also tweeted afterward to say it was her favourite interview ever.” Ben says proudly. “Although it’s probably because I was the only interviewer to not ask her about sleeping with Hugh Hefner.”

Back home in New Zealand, Ben then employed the assistance of a host of well-known Kiwis to guide him on his journey. WANNA-BEn Series 2 is packed with familiar Kiwi faces including Keisha Castle Hughes, Tiki Taane, Jeremy Corbett, Suzie Cato, Antonia Prebble, Frankie Stevens, Anna Hutchison and Oscar Kightley.

It seems there is no limit to the lengths Ben will go to be like his celebrity idols – from setting up an office in a pubic toilet to be like The Fonze, to spending a day with a realistic pair of woman’s breasts to be like Kendra, or entering a professional wrestling match to be like Hulk Hogan.

“It will be nice to have the series finally go to air and for people to see the pain and embarrassment I’m subjected too… unless of course it tanks in the ratings!”