Bick­more’s game for any chal­lenge


On any nor­mal game show you’d ex­pect the in­tel­lec­tu­als from The Project – and Peter Hel­liar – to com­pre­hen­sively trounce a bunch of ac­tors from Neigh­bours.

But Fam­ily Feud is no or­di­nary game show, with points awarded for how com­mon the an­swers are, not how clever.

“I have a very strong com­pet­i­tive streak and I thought: This’ll be good,” ex­plains Project team cap­tain Car­rie Bick­more. “I thought we’d have it in the bag but it was a lot harder than I thought.”

In this week’s All Stars, Bick­more, Steve Price, Waleed Aly and Peter Hel­liar face off against cap­tain Olympia Valance, Alan Fletcher, Jackie Wood­burne and Stefan Den­nis.

“Just be­fore do­ing it Steve Price was like ‘Aw, Waleed’s gonna weigh us down be­cause he’s too smart,” she laughs, not­ing Aly’s over-think­ing it re­sulted in him sug­gest­ing ‘The Beach’ as a place ‘where you’d meet some­one and fall in love’. It wasn’t even on the board.

Not that Bick­more had a per­fect run: “They asked me ‘what’s some­thing that’s dis­pos­able’ and I didn’t say ‘nappy’ — which given I’ve got a one-year-old (Evie) was ridicu­lously stupid,” she laughs. “I was think­ing bat­ter­ies.”

One of Aus­tralia’s best loved pre­sen­ters, Bick­more be­gan her ca­reer on ra­dio, be­fore get­ting her big break read­ing the news on Rove Live in 2006. Since 2009 she’s been a reg­u­lar on The Project, notch­ing up four Gold Lo­gie nom­i­na­tions and she won the top prize last year.

Bick­more says she had plenty of prac­tice in the lead up to All Stars, play­ing the Fam­ily Feud board game against eightyear-old son Oliver.

“We played it over sum­mer re­lent­lessly,” she says. “He’s still at the stage where he just says the first thing that he thinks of and of­ten does bet­ter than me.”

Oliver is the son of her late hus­band Greg Lange, who died af­ter a bat­tle with brain cancer in De­cem­ber 2010. In her Gold Lo­gie ac­cep­tance speech last year, Bick­more mem­o­rably launched the Bean­ies for Brain Cancer char­ity which has al­ready raised al­most half a mil­lion dol­lars, through events in­clud­ing last year’s Brain Beats con­cert with Ed Sheeran and Vance Joy. She’ll soon launch a win­ter range of Bean­ies to help the char­ity get closer to its mil­lion dol­lar tar­get.

The Project team played on its be­half for a max­i­mum $30,000 prize. Bick­more says pas­sions ran high dur­ing film­ing “we were yelling at each other ... then hug­ging” and it came down to the wire.

“It was neck and neck at the very end and so it’s a good episode,” she says.

“I think both teams brought a very dif­fer­ent game to it.”


Cap­tains Olympia Valance and Car­rie Bick­more with Grant Denyer.

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