Entertainment & Arts

MTV star 'felt pressured to have sex on screen'

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Media captionJess Impiazzi decided to leave Ex On The Beach

Stars of an MTV reality show felt under pressure from producers to have "lots" of sex on screen, the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire programme has been told.

Ex On The Beach's Jess Impiazzi said it had felt like being "in a brothel".

Meanwhile, Carley Belmonte, who stars in The Valleys, also on MTV, said she felt the production team should have made her undergo counselling after her mother had died.

Both production companies said they took duty of care seriously.

MTV said contributors' welfare was "of paramount importance".

The women admitted the series had made them celebrities and led to many job opportunities.

Impiazzi said she had "begged" producers not to air footage of her having sex with her boyfriend, which had happened while she had been drunk, but it had been broadcast.

"I cried my eyes out. I said, 'Please don't show this,'" she said.

But she had realised she had "signed my life away" and vowed she would never have on-screen sex again.

'I need to leave now'

Impiazzi, who said her appearance had led to a place on Celebrity Big Brother - had felt under immediate pressure to "to hook up with someone" during her second series on the programme.

"I had a producer say, 'Lots of shagging tonight please girls,' and I thought, 'I need to leave now,'" she said.

"You feel like you're in a brothel. It made me feel really cheap… these were all random guys."

She quit the show.

A fellow cast member also said she had heard such comments from producers.

Impiazzi said: "We know what the show is about but I never said, 'I will come on this show and behave in that way.'"

Image caption Farah Sattaur said she had had a "great experience" on Ex On The Beach

But Farah Sattaur, who also appeared on Ex On The Beach, said overall, she had had a positive experience.

"Great cast members, great experience, going abroad, I love to travel," she said. "Your social media rockets. You can collaborate with different brands. You're driving your career the way you want it to go."

Whizz Kid Entertainment, the production company behind Ex On The Beach, said contributors were made fully aware of the nature of the programme before filming.

Claims of a lack of aftercare for reality TV stars have made headlines following the deaths of Love Island stars Sophie Gradon and Mike Thalassitis.

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Media captionFormer Love Island contestant Zara Holland on what it's like inside the villa

Last week, The Jeremy Kyle Show was axed by ITV after the death of Steve Dymond, who had taken part in the programme.

Belmonte said that "almost within 24 hours" of her mother's death she had filmed for The Valleys.

Image caption Carley Belmonte said it had been "such a difficult time"

The second series of the show - which followed young people from the Welsh Valleys as they drink, party and "fulfil their dreams" in Cardiff - was being broadcast at the time.

She said she had felt under pressure to do it as she had not wanted to let anyone down.

"It was just such a difficult time," she said. "I was only 22.

"They should have made me go through counselling, because I definitely needed it.

"And even though I didn't recognise it at the time, they should have recognised it."

A few weeks ago, Belmonte's father died. And this time, she said, the producers had been really supportive and sent her flowers.

But both Impiazzi and Belmonte said they had received no aftercare when their time on the programme had ended.

And this was despite Ms Impiazzi previously having depression and Ms Belmonte experiencing anxiety while on the show, they said.

'Strict protocols'

MTV said in a statement: "Contributors' welfare across our programming is of paramount importance to us.

"We work with our production company partners to ensure there is an appropriate support structure for contributors and protocols in place to protect them."

Whizz Kid Entertainment said a support structure had been implemented before filming and all cast members had been carefully interviewed and screened.

A spokesman said: "Contributors are made fully aware of the nature of the programme before filming and we clearly highlight the impact of an increased public profile resulting from appearing in the show.

"Strict protocols around sex are in place to protect our cast."

True North, the production company for The Valleys, said it took its duty of care responsibilities extremely seriously and was confident it had not put Belomonte under any pressure to film.

It said she had been "offered friendship and support" and the filming schedule had been adapted around her needs.

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