As we learn more than we ever wanted to - or needed to, for that matter - about Donald Trump, it all seems so clear that so much of his persona is built on artifice.

He presents himself as this flamboyant billionaire, but he's been bankrupt three times. The hair, obviously, is another point - but one thing always seemed certain, especially from his TV appearances. Namely, that he was in command and in charge on the set of Celebrity Apprentice or The Apprentice. After all, the show was the way most people were introduced to him, especially on this side of the Atlantic - and it always seemed like Trump knew what he was doing - and that he made all the major decisions on the show.

As it turns out, that part isn't even true.

According to former Celebrity Apprentice contestant Clay Aiken in an interview with Domecast (and picked up by Vulture), Trump barely knew what was going on half the time and that "NBC made those decisions", when it came to firing people. In fact, Trump even had a little phone with him that acted as a teleprompter to feed him lines as people were talking to him.

"He didn’t know that people were getting in fights during the week while we were doing these tasks, the producers did. And they’d send him notes and he’d say, ‘Oh you two didn’t get along.’”

Not only that, the decision to fire a contestant was made often made on one deciding factor - ratings. "He's probably leading the country the same way that he did The Apprentice," laughed Aiken, who went on to say that he believes Trump himself didn't expect to win.

"The image that sticks with me more than anything over the past year is when he walked out on stage after he won, and I know him well enough to recognise that face as... 'Oh shit, I didn't expect that I was gonna win.' I think we all thought, seeing his face, but knowing him, I can tell you that's what he was thinking."


Via Domecast / Vulture