I’m A Celeb: Boy George teases Chris about Matt Hancock
Vicki McKellar was at Snaresbrook Court with his brother Kevin when the pop icon was convicted of assault and false imprisonment of male escort Audun Carlsen.
“It was such a shock when George got jailed,” said Vicki. “The judge gave him a 15 month sentence and no one was expecting it to be that long. Kevin had a meltdown. He put his head in his hands and fell to his knees.
“I felt so bad for him and the whole O’Dowd family. George was not only Kevin’s employer, but also his baby brother who he loved dearly.
“I gulped as George was led away and wanted to support him through his darkest days in prison.”
Vicki McKellar watched as Boy George was jailed for 15 months
Actress-turned playwright Vicki revealed how she wrote to George while he was serving his sentence at Pentonviille in London and Highpoint North prison in Suffolk and he wrote a touching letter back to her, thanking her for her loyal support.
“I sent George a book called Only Love is Real: Soulmates Reunited by Doctor Brian Weiss. I knew George was spiritual and that he’d love it.
“George wrote back to me straight away and I treasure that letter to this day.”
In his letter Boy George wrote:
“Dear Vicki. Bless you for your lovely letter and support during this surreal chapter. Thank you also for the book, which I shall add to my extensive library.
“It’s a perfect gift because I am doing tons of reading, prison provides the perfect opportunity.
“Please trust that I am in good spirits and looking forward to the future.
“God bless you and lots of love to you and all those you love.
Boy George was given an early release from prison after serving four months
On May 11th 2009 Boy George was given an early release from prison after serving four months. “It was time for celebration,” said Vicki. “His 48th birthday was just around the corner and he invited me along with his friends and family to his house in Hampstead.
“I stood in the kitchen buttering bread for the guests when George wandered over to me and asked: “Why are you only buttering one side of the bread? We’re not in prison now!
“George was wearing a devilish 666 T-shirt to make light of his prison ordeal.
“He had a tag on his ankle as even though he’d been released from prison on good behaviour, he still had to spend 6 months under house arrest. He was not allowed to be out of the confines of his house after his 7pm curfew.
“But, after dancing in his garden and singing Buddhist songs, as well as his own hit, ‘Bow Down Mister’, we all de-camped to the lounge.
“George stood right on the very borders of his living room, asking: ‘Am I alright to stand here? Will I get dragged back to prison if I put a toe over?”
Kevin O’Dowd after his brother Boy George was sentenced to 15 months in jail
Boy George and his brother, Kevin, later invited Vicki for Sunday roast at their mother Dinah’s home.
“It was there that George played me a demo of a beautiful song called, ‘Lights’, that he’d written about his friend, Paul Starr, who had sadly died of AIDS.
“I don’t think it was ever released, which is so sad, because it really deserved to be a big hit.”
Vicki revealed how she became Boy George’s Number 1 fan when she saw him perform, ‘Do You Really Want To Hurt Me’, on Top Of The Pops for the first time in September 1982.
“I remember staring at the television screen mesmerised. I fell in love….or as much as you can be in love at 6 years old.
“When ‘Karma Chameleon’ hit Number 1 a year later, I first met George. It was in Brent Cross shopping centre when the whole band were signing their first book, ‘When Cameras Go Crazy.’
“George signed my book and I nearly passed out when he kissed me.
“The next time I met George was outside Red Bus recording studios. I pushed my way through the crowd of fans, and George told my Mum she looked like Elizabeth Taylor! She was so chuffed!
“I became Boy George’s Number 1 fan and followed him everywhere – from TV appearances to airports – and even sitting in for every day of his trial at Snaresbrook Crown Court.
“After the trial, George’s brother, Kevin, was devastated, like me, that George had been jailed.
“I friend requested Kevin on Facebook and he accepted the request. He started to message me and eventually asked me on a date.
“I agreed to meet him for a coffee at BAFTA – I’d become a member by then, due to my acting work.
“Kevin later took me to George’s Hampstead mansion…a place I’d been outside frequently as a fan!
“The inside of the house was exquisite. But also very George!
“It was super comfy and had paintings all over the walls. Once you walked into the hall you were met by the staircase, which spiralled up to the very top of the house, which was once a gothic church. George bought the place for £250,000 in 1984. He later purchased the mansion next door and merged them into one. It’s now on the market for £17 million!
“I remember using George’s downstairs toilet for the first time and thinking, ‘This is unreal. I’m in my idol’s home, sitting on his loo!’
“After that I followed Kevin into George’s kitchen. He came over and sat next to me, and told me he loved me.
“Then we kissed….very passionately! I had to stop it there, as there was no way I was going to let things go any further in George’s house when he was in prison at the time.
“But Kevin and I ended up dating for a year before our relationship fizzled out.”
St Alban’s playwright, Vicki, is the co-creator of ‘The Marilyn Conspiracy’, a play which won rave reviews at the Edinburgh Fringe and is now going to be launched in a London theatre next year.
Vicki laughed about George’s 80s pop star singer-friend, Marilyn: “No, my play’s not about him! But about Marilyn Monroe and the tragic final days of her life, and why I strongly believe she was murdered.
“It’s wonderful how George has turned his life around since those dark days in prison and I am so proud of him
“Now I’m praying that George will win I’m A Celebrity 2022 and be crowned King – or Queen! – of the Jungle.”