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Poison's Bret Michaels faces Donald Trump

PASADENA — Rock star Bret Michaels is going from his reality cable series “Rock of Love,” where women try to earn his attention, to the reality competition series “Celebrity Apprentice,” where he will seek the attention of Donald Trump.

Michaels, best known as the lead singer of the band Poison, wanted to be on NBC’s “Celebrity Apprentice” to show a different side of himself from what he’s revealed on three seasons of “Rock of Love,” which mainly focused on sex, hugs and rock ’n’ roll.

There’s a serious side to Michaels.

“I have been a Type 1 diabetic all my life,” Michaels said during an NBC party earlier this year. “I wanted to be able to go in there and show everybody that I’m a fighter, a competitor. My motto is work hard, play harder. To have 22 years in the music business, where most bands only have a two- or three-year life span, has been a matter of always fighting the good fight.”

On this season, which has a two-hour premiere March 14, 14 celebrities will compete in business-driven tasks around New York City to raise money for charities.

Michaels chose the American Diabetes Association and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. He will take on Darryl Strawberry, Bill Goldberg, Michael Johnson, Rod Blagojevich, Sinbad, Curtis Stone, Cyndi Lauper, Sharon Osbourne, Holly Robinson Peete, Selita Ebanks, Maria Kanellis, Carol Leifer and Summer Sanders.

Michaels says he came to the battle well armed.

“I am so involved in every aspect of our career from what we shoot as a video to the accounting,” Michaels says. “Most musicians make the mistake of thinking, ‘I’m great and whatever happens happens.’ What happens is you don’t get to keep doing this as long as you want. If you want to keep doing this for a long time, you’d better be at the top of your game.”

Michaels is careful not to reveal any secrets about the season, but he says that many of the other contestants underestimated him because of his rock star background.

“They figured I would either be too burned out or tired. I surprised them,” he says. “They didn’t count on how hard I work at everything I do.”

V TV and movie critic Rick Bentley can be reached at rbentley@fresnobee.com or (559) 441-6355. Read his blog at fresnobeehive.com.

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