Rise And Fall's Greg James on getting presenting advice from Claudia Winkleman

Rise and Fall — Greg James with the contestants of Channel 4's new reality show Rise and Fall.
Rise and Fall — Greg James with the contestants of Channel 4's new reality show Rise and Fall. (Image credit: Channel 4)

Rise and Fall is a brand new reality show for Channel 4, hosted by Radio One DJ Greg James and created by the makers of hit BBC series, The Traitors

Rise and Fall will see 16 ordinary British people, from all walks of life, compete to win up to £100,000. 

"Everyone begins the game as equals but they soon find themselves either in a position of power as a ‘Ruler’ living in the penthouse, or part of the powerless ‘Grafter’ group in the basement", explains Greg who is hosting the 18-part series that sees players form alliances to take and keep control. 

"Those in power will be responsible for making decisions that affect those who have none. But anyone can rise and anyone can fall at any time!"

Here Greg tells us more and reveals Claudia Winkleman, who hosted The Traitors, was happy to impart a few words of wisdom...

What did you think when you first heard about the idea for Rise and Fall? 

Greg says, "It was all very cloak and dagger to start with. The team approached me and said, 'We know you like Succession. We know you like Squid Game and we know you like being part of big, fun games on Radio One. Would you like to be the ringmaster of this new TV series we have planned?' When they told me more I didn’t even try to be cool, it’s my dream job!"

Greg James is hosting Channel 4's brand new reality show, Rise and Fall.

Greg James is hosting Channel 4's brand new reality show, Rise and Fall.  (Image credit: Channel 4)

How would you describe the game? 

"It’s a social experiment full of drama and jeopardy and I think people might get to see my devious side. I’m going to be based with the Rulers but I’ll be rolling in plenty of mischievous grenades when they’re deciding what to do with the Grafters. It’s a game of strategy and alliances. The key will be when you’re in power, how do you keep that power. "

Can you tell us about some of the challenges the Grafters will be faced with? 

"A lot of them are physically challenging, some of them are a bit grim and grotty. They’ll start off for low money and then the Rulers will see how far they can push them. The more work they get done the more money that goes into the prize fund for one of the Rulers to win." 

Did you enjoy watching The Traitors and have you asked Claudia Winkleman for any tips? 

"Yes, I thought it was fantastic and yes, I gave Claudia a call to ask her what it was like to immerse yourself in something like this. She told me how obsessed she’d got with The Traitors and said, ‘Just let yourself fall into this whole other world’. Like all reality shows, it’s all about the people and who you are rooting for."   

The contestants in Rise and Fall.

The contestants are all competing to rise to the top to win £100,000 in Rise and Fall.  (Image credit: Channel 4)

Are you going to get any sleep while juggling your early starts at Radio One with hosting Rise and Fall? 

"I’ll be finishing each day at about 7 pm so as long as I’m asleep in bed by 9 pm I’ll be up ready for The Breakfast Show. If It was a year-long gig then I might find myself having to look for a new wife afterward, but my wife Bella is really excited. She loves watching reality shows with me and when I told her about this she said, ‘You have to do it, it sounds amazing!’"

Who do you think the show will appeal to?

"It features people of all different ages, all different backgrounds and walks of life and so we really hope it’s going to be loved by people of all ages. My teenage niece very rarely gets excited about any work I do or which pop star I’ve been interviewing on the radio but she sent me a Snapchat message yesterday saying, ‘Yay!  I am so excited for this!’ It’s a great format. It’s not complicated, it’s about money, status and class which we are obsessed with in this country!"

Rise and Fall starts on Channel 4 on Sunday, March 19 at 9 pm.

Tess Lamacraft
Senior Writer for What's On TV, TV Times, TV & Satellite week, Whattowatch.com

Tess is a senior writer for What’s On TV, TV Times, TV & Satellite and WhattoWatch.com She's been writing about TV for over 25 years and worked on some of the UK’s biggest and best-selling publications including the Daily Mirror where she was assistant editor on the weekend TV magazine, The Look, and Closer magazine where she was TV editor. She has freelanced for a whole range of websites and publications including We Love TV, The Sun’s TV Mag, Woman, Woman’s Own, Fabulous, Good Living, Prima and Woman and Home.