‘Celebrity Apprentice’ wrapped up its season on Feb. 13 with an explosive and star-studded finale, and HollywoodLife.com just caught up with the winner to get all the dirt.
First thing’s first! Congratulations. You raised $573, 329 for the Arthritis Foundation — but you didn’t win the challenge. Did you think that was going to go differently?
Matt Iseman: I didn’t think I had a chance! Boy George raised $120,000 when it wasn’t his charity. Knowing he was going to do all that, and he has a lot of very famous, wealthy people in his rolodex, I knew if I do a respectful job, I could make up for it in other places. I felt like a chicken with my head cut off. I hadn’t worked with any of them before, so I had to be hands on with them too. I just focused though on what the brands wanted!
Let’s talk about that winning moment!
All the weeks of work paid off — it was a magic moment; looking at Arnold [Schwarznegger], Tyra Banks‘ eyes saying I was gorgeous man like she said. My girlfriend did not appreciate that comment but I did! It was a a moment I know I’ll never forget, and getting to really help other people, for them to see a guy with that same disease up there being active. That’s why I did it. I collapsed and slept for a day and a half afterward. I’m honestly so honored to be able to get to know Boy George, who I’ve been a fan of for years, and now I can call a good friend.
Was there anything you wish they showed?
After the Harry Potter challenge, we’re doing these interviews, and I was telling people I felt so lucky that I got a task that was kind of in my wheel house. And I hear [Arnold] saying “Bullshit!” from this walkway above, and he throws me a cigar and goes, “Enjoy it, because tomorrow I might fire your ass!” It was so surreal. When I got the cigar, I was like, ‘The only way I smoke it is if I win.’ Well, now my mouth tastes like a horse has been doing laps in it. So worth it.
— Matt Iseman (@mattiseman) February 14, 2017
Also, during the finale there were were really three parts to the variety show; I had asked some of my Ninja Warrior friends come out and they did acro-yoga which is so beautiful. These ninjas put on a five-minute show and I got on top of them and did the human flag. It was so fun physically, and I know how hard they work; I wanted to share some love for Ninja Warrior. And I wanted to illustrate that I can do that now because of the treatments that gave me my life back!
I don’t want to say regrets, but is there anything you would have done differently?
Matt: A million things and nothing; as you get into the boardroom each week, you see your slip ups. But the slip ups that you make and survive early on, if you learn the lesson, really save you. That was the case on the finale during the photoshop part. I remembered during the Harry Potter challenge when I was running out of time and finished, I learned I had the chance you sell it with the presentation. I would have poured myself into it and beat myself up, but I didn’t panic and just had to be confident it was going to be good enough. Having those realizations because of your earlier stumbles and struggles, gave you more confidence moving forward. You had to have struggles.
Would you do an all stars season if asked?
Matt: In a heartbeat… well, I think I would! The opportunity was incredible and it was almost a million dollars for the foundation. But if you get big dogs from past season, it may be tough. However, if the Governor called, I wouldn’t say no.
HollywoodLifers, were you happy to see Matt win?