Omid Djalili has revealed that his outlook on life was changed by an unusual source – ITV reality diving competition Splash!

“Jumping off a ten-metre diving board, I thought it was ridiculous!” the comedian told RadioTimes.com.

“But it was totally life-changing. Because when you do something intrepid, it gives you courage.

"And in life you need courage to push your own boundaries, and not be fearful of things. That experience stuck with me.” 

In fact, Djalili believes that without his experience on Splash! he would never have had the courage to write his autobiography, Hopeful, which he will promote at the Cheltenham book festival early next month.

“I’d have been very fearful of writing a book before that,” he explained.

“But after that I thought I could do anything. Bang! Book’s written. You need that experience to unleash other creativities within you.” 

Outside of his writing, it’s a very busy time for Djalili – he has a new tour called Iranalamadingdong from November, and is fronting a documentary next month where he tries the hottest chilli dishes in the world called Hot and Dangerous.

But perhaps his most personal upcoming project is executive-producing the documentary We Are Many, which examines the 2003 Iraq war protests and is due to be released in cinemas later this year.

“It’s been about eight years in the making,” he said. “It’s definitely a passion project – I’ve put a lot of money into it!”

“We have very high hopes, and I think it’s a film that will go global.”

Hot and Dangerous with Omid Djalili will air on Quest at 9pm from 24 October