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Leigh Francis reveals the Keith Lemon character is inspired by his best friend

Leigh Francis reveals the Keith Lemon character is inspired by his best friend

The TV star revealed the inspiration behind his Keith Lemon character is his life-long best mate

Leigh Francis has revealed his Keith Lemon character is actually inspired by his best friend.

The comedian first portrayed Keith in his Bo’Selecta show which debuted back in 2002. But now, after the end of Celebrity Juice, Francis is about to take to the stage as himself for the first time.

The 50-year-old will be touring the UK with his comedy show, My First Time.

So ahead of this, Francis is now revealing the man behind the iconic character he’s become better known as. He appeared on Good Morning Britain today, 23 June, where he revealed his real-life pal is the original Keith Lemon.

But did say it’s ‘weird’ to be himself as he appeared on the TV without portraying a character.

The real Keith Lemon with Leigh Francis.

Saying the character is ‘full of joy’ and just wants to ‘put smiles on faces’, he was asked about the ‘real Keith Lemon’ by Ben Shephard as co-host Ranvir Sigh said: “This is a story!”

“That’s my friend who I’ve known since I were three. I said to him ‘I’ll say you’re name on TV’ and he says, ‘How are you going to do that?’ and I said, ‘I’ll give a character your name'. And then… this happened.”

Showing old images of Francis and his real mate Lemon, Shephard and Singh couldn’t cope with it, asking in disbelief: “Hang on, is this you with Keith Lemon?”

“Yeah there he is – that’s me there.”

Francis added: “Back then he used to carry a picture of me and him together in his wallet to prove that we were friends.”

Leigh Francis as Keith Lemon the character.

But the comedian told his friend it ‘looks weird’ and like they were ‘lovers’.

The real Lemon was actually best man at Francis’ wedding to Jill Carter all the way back in 2002 with the comedian adding: “His best man speech was very unique.”

Even Shephard admitted this morning’s interview was an odd one for him as he said: “It’s strange because I’ve always had to call you Keith.”

And Francis confessed: “I just don’t know how to behave. Should I be sensible? Or not sensible?”

After joking he wanted to be himself because of his age, he revealed: “I got asked to do a panto, and I went ‘oh I don’t want to do panto’, I know everyone says it’s great fun and everything but I said I should do my own show if I’m going to do panto.”

With a cast of him and two others, his show will ‘bring back all the fun I’ve had over the ‘00s up to present day’ with various characters, masks, sketches and lots of audience interaction.

Featured Image Credit: GMB

Topics: TV and Film, Keith Lemon, Celebrity