ENTERTAINMENT

Chris is happy to introduce younger ‘Claim to Fame’ fans to his famous dad

Season 1 contestants of ‘Claim to Fame’

Warning: This article contains spoilers for Claim to Fame, season 2, episode 10, “Needle in a Haystack.”

After three failed attempts to guess Chris’ celebrity connection on ABC’s Claim to Fame, Monay finally cracked the case and sent her elusive housemate packing on Monday’s season 2 finale when he was revealed to be Donny Osmond‘s son.

In his exit interview, Chris Osmond tells EW he knew his time had finally come after people had gone home for guessing he was a relative of Elvis, Elton John, and Billy Idol, but that he would have guessed incorrectly for Gabriel or Monay anyway. He also reveals that he knows very well that everyone’s mom knew he was Donny’s son right away, but that he’s happy to help a new generation realize just how big of a legend his father is.

Chris on Claim to Fame and Donny Osmond

Chris and his dad Donny Osmond

| Credit: ABC/Gizelle Hernandez, Eric McCandless/ABC via Getty

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: You sent so many people home by being impossible for them to guess. Was that a surprise to you, that nobody in the house was able to put it together until the very end?

CHRIS OSMOND: The first, sending Jane home, was a little nerve-racking. I thought she had me and then Elvis Presley came out of nowhere and I’m like, “Wow, that’s hilarious.” The second one, I’m like, “Okay, this is kind of funny.” The third one is, “This is ridiculous.” Like, you guys need to stop, you’re just sending yourself home. But every single time, it was nerve-racking for sure, because you’re standing up there and wondering what name they’re gonna say, even though you get tips from other people, like, “Hey, they’re on this Elton John train, just letting you know.” There’s always that possibility that you could go home.

Were you feeling kind of cocky when Monay was about to guess or were you thinking they finally got you this time?

Oh, no. When Monay was about to guess, the name Donny Osmond was already out in the house. So I knew that that was coming close to the end for me. And the fact that in the final challenge the Donny and Marie lunch box came out, that just added to it. I’m like, “Oh, I’m totally a goner.”

What did your dad say when you first told him you were doing the show?

He was really thrilled. He was excited. It’s a big opportunity. This is a big show and there’s a lot of hype with it. And so he was very supportive all the way through for me to do it.

Has he been watching?

Oh yeah, he watches every single episode. If he’s not watching it with me, he calls me during it and after he’s like, “Oh my gosh, that was insane, that was amazing, that was incredible, you did so great.” So he’s been my hype man.

What did he say about all these wrong guesses that people had for you, which are technically about him?

He can’t stop laughing about it. He thinks it’s hilarious. It’s just funny because I feel like now I’m a little bit of the talk of the internet on the guy that got away and that all of his cult following, all of these moms, know who he is, but their kids just have no clue, so I think it was probably good press for him to show the younger generation who he is. But it was a big realization that he has such a strong following from the ’70s and they’re still with them to this day. I mean, I’ve known that for 32 years, but the younger generation, they didn’t live in that time so they were never really part of it. I’m sure they’ve heard the name Donny Osmond, but what he’s done and everything with that, they kind of had to have lived in the ’70s to experience it.

Yeah, I wanted to ask if you knew about this phenomenon that people were texting their moms only your photo asking them to guess who you’re related to. We actually tried it here, I had about a dozen coworkers text their moms and every single one guessed right.

I think we already knew that because the generation that goes to his show in Vegas is kind of the generation with him, but I do have to say he’s very much in the limelight right now and I think a lot of the younger generation are starting to realize how big of a legend he is. The thing with my dad is, yeah he was massive in the ’70s, but he still has held strong and he has such a strong following that the guy will never stop working, he’ll never stop entertaining, and there’s a reason why. He’s just a talented, talented man.

CLAIM TO FAME – Chris

Chris on ‘Claim to Fame’

| Credit: ABC/John Fleenor

Going into the finale, who were your final guesses for Monay and Gabriel?I’m gonna be honest, I had no idea who J.B. Smoove was, and I will admit that. It was hard to figure her out so I needed help from other people when I came back to the house. Gabriel, for some reason, I was just stuck with Terry Crews for like five episodes and I was still stuck with it even when somebody told me Nick Cannon and I had seen his clue. Like for some reason, it just wasn’t dawning on me. So I think third place was a great win for me because if I went further, I probably would have guessed wrong.

Are you still close with anyone since filming ended?

Well, we’re in a giant group chat with everybody so we have a great time there. But yeah, I do stay connected with a lot of them. In fact, I just saw Cole Cook. He came out to Utah because [his sister] Alicia Keys was playing a concert out here. So we went out and met with him and hung out. I think probably the biggest thing I took away from this show was friendship and camaraderie, people that come from similar backgrounds and having celebrity relatives, or I guess living in a shadow of somebody. 

Speaking of which, after your elimination, you got emotional in your confessional interview, saying there were many years you felt like you couldn’t measure up to your dad’s status and were living in his shadow. We hear so much about so-called nepo babies and the leg up you get in the industry, but it seems maybe that was also a challenge for you, being in the same industry. Can you tell me more about that?

I’ve always had a big interest in doing entertainment myself and it’s probably just by nature of watching my dad perform in front of hundreds of thousands of people going on tour with him. And so it was always in my blood to do music and perform and sing and I’ve done it professionally for the last couple of years. But it definitely was difficult, almost like not having your own identity. You’re always the son of somebody else. And that was a lot of conversation with my dad before the show began, like, this might be my opportunity to kind of shine in my own way and show my talents. And so I’m glad I did it…. But, to answer your question, as far as being a nepo baby and that term, I think right now and especially the show, it’s a great way to express how not everything is just handed to me. I have my own life. I work a 9-to-5. I’m raising kids and dealing with inflation right now, dealing with the pressures of the world, and trying to take care of my kids and my wife. I still got to work, I still got to put food on the table just like anybody else. It’s just, I’ve got a dad with a different desk job, you know?

Where can fans find your music? Are you pursuing more in the entertainment industry?

Yeah, I just released a single so you can find that on Spotify, Apple Music, anywhere else. And you can find me on social media. But yeah, more to come. I’m producing and recording right now and hopefully performing here soon.

This interview has been edited and condensed for length and clarity.

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Season 1 contestants of ‘Claim to Fame’

Claim to Fame

Twelve contestants who are related to big stars live in a house and try to uncover who each player is related to, all while keeping the identity of their own famous family member a secret.

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