Robbie Williams strips off for X Factor hopefuls

Robbie Williams shocked Gary Barlow and 'X Factor' contestants when he greeted them at judges' houses wearing only strategically placed palm leaves

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This article is from 2011.

Robbie Williams and Gary Barlow

Robbie Williams and Gary Barlow

Robbie Williams greeted 'The X Factor' contestants at his Los Angeles house naked except for some strategically placed palm leaves.

The 'Rudebox' singer has joined the ITV1 show as a guest mentor to help his Take That bandmate and 'X Factor' judge Gary Barlow whittle his eight hopefuls in the boys category down to four but both Gary and the contestants were shocked with Robbie's prank at his home.

A source said: "It was hilarious. Gary, the contestants and crew were stunned.

"Robbie just stood there stark naked apart from these tiny leaves."

One person who wasn't surprised by the joke was Robbie's wife Ayda Field who encouraged him to strip off after seeing Simon Cowell's guest mentor Sinitta do the same thing on the show in 2009 when she helped him with the over 25s category.

The source told The Sun newspaper: "Ayda has a cheeky side and convinced Rob it would be a good laugh. He was immediately game."

An 'X Factor' spokesperson added: "Robbie clearly had nothing to hide from the hopefuls."

Gary revealed he choose Robbie over their bandmates Howard Donald, Mark Owen or Jason Orange because he has loved the show "since day one".

He said: "Robbie seemed like the obvious one. I knew he loved the show. He has done since day one. He watches all reality TV, including all the c**p telly like 'Jersey Shore'. He loves it, so I knew he was a big fan of 'The X Factor'.

"When we were on tour I said, 'I need someone for the Judges Houses. What do you reckon?' I was thinking he wouldn't be too into it.

"But he was like, 'Please let me'. Then he invited me to his house, to stay while we do it."

This article is from 2011.

Robbie Williams

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