Former rugby league star Sam Burgess is reportedly the highest paid celebrity recruit on SAS Australia, earning a whopping $200,000 pay cheque.
And it seems Channel Seven is keen to get its money’s worth after spending so much money securing the South Sydney Rabbitohs player.
Sam, 32, has been featured heavily on the military-style reality show, while the other contestants are completing the same challenges almost unnoticed.
And as the show heads into its fourth episode, a production source has told Daily Mail Australia several of the recruits are ‘frustrated’ with their lack of airtime.
A handful of stars are unhappy their efforts have been left on the cutting room floor, saying SAS Australia’s second season is ‘basically the Sam Burgess show’.
It’s not fair! SAS Australia recruits are reportedly livid that retired NRL player Sam Burgess, 32, (pictured) has unfairly been given a clean ‘classic redemption story edit’ to redeem himself
‘The talk right now amongst recruits is they are doing their best to make Sam Burgess look good… doesn’t take a genius to figure out why,’ the source said.
‘The best way to minimise any potential backlash was to make him likeable in the edit and to make everyone else look bad or like a tool.’
‘It’s blatantly obvious to the recruits the network is terrified given Sam has ongoing legal issues still pending,’ they added.
Star of the show: But after almost four episodes in, a SAS Australia source told Daily Mail Australia that this year’s recruits are fuming with their edits, while others are frustrated that their efforts have been left behind on the cutting room floor
The insider sensationally claimed producers were instructed by executives at Seven to ‘start conditioning the audience to liking Sam’.
‘The order came straight from the top… SAS is trying to pull the wool over audiences eyes,’ they alleged.
Sam confessed on the show last week he’d been unfaithful during his four-year marriage to ex-wife Phoebe while being interrogated by the directing staff.
Not happy! ‘The talk right now amongst recruits is they are doing their best to make Sam look good … doesn’t take a genius to figure out why,’ the source told Daily Mail Australia on Monday
‘I don’t think I was the greatest husband at times,’ he said. ‘I embarrassed my wife. I’d had an affair with a girl, a woman in Melbourne. That’s true.
‘I was away on tour, and regretfully that happened, which would have been… it would have been a tough place for Phoebe to be.’
Seven has categorically denied claims that Sam was given favourable coverage.
‘Channel Seven strongly denies all allegations presented within,’ a spokesperson told Daily Mail Australia on Monday afternoon.
Breaking his silence: Sam confessed on the show last week he’d been unfaithful during his four-year marriage to ex-wife Phoebe while being interrogated by the directing staff
It comes just days after singer Pete Murray and surf lifesaver Jett Kenny expressed their disappointment about not getting any airtime.
The musician, 51, said in a video shared to Instagram on Sunday: ‘I just wanted to say sorry, you still haven’t seen any task that I’ve done on SAS.
‘Unfortunately, that’s just the way that the show’s been edited, and I know some of you guys are getting a little bit frustrated.’
Lack of screen time: It comes just days after singer Pete Murray (pictured) express his disappointment about not getting any air time. ‘Unfortunately, that’s just the way that the show’s been edited, and I know some of you guy’s are getting a little bit frustrated,’ he said
Similarly, Jett said on Thursday he felt like he had no choice but to address his social media followers after one of his scenes was edited out of the show.
He shared a photo of himself in the driver’s seat of a car about to plunge into freezing cold water, alongside another image of himself in the water displaying the thumbs-up sign.
‘For those wondering, yes. I made it,’ he wrote.
SAS Australia continues on Monday at 7.30pm on Channel Seven
Cheeky! On Thursday, Jett also took a dig at the show’s editors who cut Jett’s successful attempt at the strenuous challenge. The task involved the recruits being plunged into water and forced to hold their breath for 40 seconds, before they were allowed to swim free