Sir David Jason has branded television talent shows “voyeuristic” and “cruel” and blasted the hopefuls who compete in them as wanting an easy entry into the industry.
The Only Fools And Horses and A Touch Of Frost actor said he understood the popularity of programmes such as The X Factor but accused them of making audiences more cruel.
Speaking at the launch of his new documentary, Sir David said: “Sometimes bits of television talent shows can be quite cruel and that's sort of the object of the exercise. They wouldn't have put on a show to show all the best every night all the time, it would be dull wouldn't it?
“So they have to show you some of the less talented people in order to make us lot go, ‘ooh look at that, he's no good is he? He can't do nothing’.”
The veteran actor, who spent 10 years in amateur dramatics before he landed his first TV role, added: “It's a bit voyeuristic, isn't it? You are watching people expose themselves and the audience seems to want to see the tears and the failures and how much it means to everybody.”
Sir David said he did not want his documentary The Show Must Go On, which will be screened by Five on June 7 and follows members of an amateur dramatic group as they prepare to put on a play in a West End theatre, to be like a TV talent show.