Freddie Flintoff MBE is a National Treasure; a cricket all-rounder who became one of Britain’s best-loved sporting heroes before forging an equally successful career on screen. But Freddie hasn’t always coped well with the demands of life in the public eye.
As a new recruit to the England side in 2001, and under constant scrutiny from fans, the press and his colleagues, Flintoff felt pressure to keep his weight down. It was an obsession that soon evolved into Bulimia; a disorder focused on purging food by any means necessary, as he tried to keep up with his slimmer, fitter teammates. But what started as a quick fix solution soon spiralled into something he battled with throughout his entire career, and which he hasn’t fully dealt with to this day.
‘Freddie Flintoff: Living with Bulimia’ is an unflinchingly personal documentary following Freddie as he examines his eating disorder for the first time. His journey leads him to meet other sufferers, who share their experiences of how Bulimia has affected their lives, and the families of those whose eating disorders led to tragically fatal consequences. Ultimately, Freddie seeks to answer the most important question of all: Should he seek professional treatment for his eating disorder?
Freddie says: “If this resonates with one person watching, or through this we can show someone that there is help out there, then this is worth doing.”
Charlotte Moore, Director of BBC Content, says: “I would like to thank Freddie for opening up about his struggle with bulimia in this very personal film for BBC One. I hope this film will raise awareness about a subject that is all too often a taboo and make a difference to the way men talk about mental health.”
Freddie Flintoff: Living With Bulimia, was commissioned for BBC One by Charlotte Moore, Director, BBC Content and Catherine Catton, Commissioning Editor, Factual Entertainment and Popular Factual. The Executive Producers were Andrew Mackenzie and Melanie Leach, and the Producer/Director was Leo Burley.
The documentary is part of the BBC’s ongoing commitment to mental health.