By on April 10, 2015

Jeremy Clarkson Thankfully Not Smiling

Aside from not presenting cars on BBC anymore, former “Top Gear” host Jeremy Clarkson won’t be appearing on another BBC program, as well.

The Daily Mirror reports Clarkson was to guest-host the satirical show “Have I Got News For You” later in April, but has pulled out for the time being. Hat Trick Productions managing director Jimmy Mulville, whose company produces the show for the BBC, says he and his staff “fully expect him to resume his hosting duties later in the year.”

Until then, Clarkson and his colleagues Richard Hammond and James May will be hosting a number of live shows in the United Kingdom, Norway, South Africa and Australia. However, the shows will have no association with “Top Gear” or the BBC — meaning no clips from the show or appearances by The Stig — and will be billed simply as Clarkson, Hammond and May Live.

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33 Comments on “Jeremy Clarkson Pulls Out Of Planned BBC Program Appearance...”


  • avatar
    bunkie

    For the live shows, they can borrow Charlie Sheen’s title “The Flaming Torpedo of Truth” as he’s no longer using it.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    BBC cut itself off from the golden goose.

    Since Clarkson sold his ownership interest in Top Gear, he was just another employee.

    Now he is a free agent. He, Captain Slow and the Hamster can now sell their new program to the highest international bidder.

    What network would not want a proven format, with proven hosts and a potential audience of 350 million worldwide?

    Personally, I believe that Clarkson orchestrated this episode so that when they do move elsewhere they don’t appear to be mercenary capitalists but instead 3 loyal friends.

    And unless the BBC has trademarked the phrase “Stig”, he will be able to move with them.

    • 0 avatar
      skog

      Interesting thought. I did get the sense that he’s deliberately tried to get fired.

      And then, there’s this. http://www.reddit.com/r/TopGear/comments/31qhnf/trademark_filed_in_uk_for_clarkson_hammond_may/

    • 0 avatar
      sydlexius

      The BBC has several trademarks in UK, EU, and WIPO for “The Stig” (cf: EU006811781, UK00002319949, WE00001062075), according to my search here: https://www.ipo.gov.uk/tmcase/. Trade Dress is a bit more difficult to find, but I’m fairly certain that you’d find registrations for the Top Gear logo, the Stig. Heck, they might even hold the copyright to the cover of “Jessica” used on the show.

      I don’t know what, if any, UK laws offer protection for parodies of any of those, assuming the troika decide to do another show, and if it’ll even be subject to UK or international laws and treaties.

    • 0 avatar
      Mr. K

      Arthur Dailey said:

      Now he is a free agent. He, Captain Slow and the Hamster can now sell their new program to the highest international bidder.

      What network would not want a proven format, with proven hosts and a potential audience of 350 million worldwide?

      Personally, I believe that Clarkson orchestrated this episode so that when they do move elsewhere they don’t appear to be mercenary capitalists but instead 3 loyal friends.

      Even the rat pack got old…
      …For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven…

      …But now the days are short, I’m in the autumn of my years
      And I think of my life as vintage wine
      From fine old kegs
      From the brim to the dregs
      It poured sweet and clear
      It was a very good year…

      It’s a well known fact (in some circles at least) that older, ill kempt wine can easily turn to vinegar.

    • 0 avatar
      DC Bruce

      Assuming that the producers of Top Gear have competent legal counsel, they no doubt have copyrighted everything about the show . . . including the format, in order to avoid precisely what you suggest. It’s even possible that the three stars have non-competition provisions in their contracts that preclude them from working for a similar show for a limited number of years. This certainly would be possible in the U.S.; not sure about Britain.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        If the three of them do another show together, then they would probably be better off if they did something other than a car show, if but to avoid endless comparisons to Top Gear.

        They would be well-suited to doing a quasi-travel show. Of course, Clarkson would play the Ugly Brit, as that part would come to him naturally.

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        Don’t think that you can copyright the format as it is in the public domain as various other shows have used similar formats. There is nothing unique about it, except possibly the Stig. Jack Paar couldn’t patent the late night talk show, nor could his network.

        BBC refused to renew the contract. Hence Clarkson is a free agent. If he had left on his own it may have been more problematic, but the Beeb ‘pushed’ him. Hence the genius of his being ‘fired’.

  • avatar
    Domestic Hearse

    Does anyone find the timing of all this a bit, um, coincidental? A fortnight before the expiration of May’s and Hammond’s contracts at the BBAC (and subsequent renegotiation), Clarkson goes off the rails and commits a fireable offense. Then the other two, claiming (as always) they’re a package, let their contracts expire and tada, all three are Free Agent Three Car Musketeers.

    Not that Clarkson isn’t a boor, a loudmouth, a bully — it’s just that he’s plenty smart enough to know he was on thin ice with the Beeb already and one more “fracas” would lead him to being sacked.

    Looking back, it appears entirely possible this was the plan all along.

    • 0 avatar
      carrya1911

      Surely if Clarkson and company wanted to eject from the BBC he could have come up with a method that didn’t involve making himself look like a gigantic prat and that wouldn’t have essentially screwed over everyone on the TG production crew in the process.

      I don’t see a masterful plan, here.

      I see making the best of a bad situation.

      • 0 avatar
        psarhjinian

        It’s possible, but it’s not like TG’s most loyal fans really care. People will excuse a lot from their pet demagogue.

        • 0 avatar
          mike978

          It may well be just coincidental. From what I read he is also going through a divorce, so it is more likely that it is related to that. He had an out – just don`t resign your contract.

        • 0 avatar
          Pch101

          As I noted before, the only ways to punish Clarkson are to jail and extract large sums of cash from him. Not only does firing a guy in his position not hurt him, but it actually helps him.

      • 0 avatar
        CB1000R

        not a fan of the show. Like Farrago once mentioned, I find Clarkson to be an insufferable chauvinist (in the truest sense of the word). But, maybe it’s his schtick, and perhaps he’s a lovely person when not acting. But I don’t care to know.

        Planned or not, it does work out for them, and there is no such thing as bad publicity when your gimmick is being a total douche. All three will get stupid rich (or richer), and then I think we will find their new improved formula will be weaker sauce. Hard to catch lightning in a bottle twice. (Enough old metaphors for today.) Or, I’m wrong, and they are all billionaires in a few years.

        If they hire the producer Clarkson bitch-slapped, then I say yes, it was planned all along.

      • 0 avatar
        dtremit

        Isn’t “gigantic prat” basically Jeremy Clarkson’s character sketch?

    • 0 avatar
      MBella

      I agree Domestic Hearse. Clarkson is also the one that reported the incident to BBC bosses. If he didn’t, nobody would have known anything.

  • avatar
    LALoser

    This has become the Kardashians of cars.

  • avatar
    285exp

    If he was fired from Top Gear, why should he still be involved in any other BBC show? If they were showing that workplace violence is unacceptable then he should have been removed from all BBC shows, not just Top Gear.

  • avatar
    Dan R

    The BBC are state funded and don’t need the money no matter how nice it was. Clarkson had become a liability and a threat to their brand. They have a worldwide audience, in some cases the only reliable source of content. The audience of angry, middle aged white men only goes so far. It will be interesting to see who picks up Clarkson with his peculiarly English 19th century humour and worldview.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      The BBC also generates revenue from selling programming abroad, which it uses to reduce the cost burden imposed on Britons for operating the network.

      Top Gear has been its top revenue producer. Odds are good that a loss in revenue will have to be offset by an increase in the license fee that Brits pay to watch television. In other words, there may be a tax increase as a result of this.

    • 0 avatar
      Mr. K

      Dan R:

      It will be interesting to see who picks up Clarkson with his peculiarly English 19th century humour and worldview.

      Perhaps Mr. Cruz needs someone to do outreach..

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    We in Canada have had our own Jezza for 3 decades. His name is Don Cherry and he was the most watched ‘celebrity’ on our national broadcasting network (CBC our watered down version of the BBC) each week during the hockey season and every 2nd day during playoffs.

    Known for his outlandish clothing and opinions, a true chauvinistic, old school attitude and belief in violent action.

    He is also a collector of 70’s era Lincolns, particularly Mark Iv’s and Mark V’s which he compares to himself as being both large and classy.

    He finished high in the voting for both the ‘greatest’ and the ‘worst’ Canadian, the same as Jezza did in the U.K. And like Jezza his audience is large, vocal and unfailingly supportive.

    And just like Jezza, being accused of hitting another man much younger than him would just increase his popularity with his fans.

  • avatar
    Mr. K

    Despite Clarkson there are still many examples of fine Brits:

    (NSFW)

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-life/10075883/Star-Trek-Does-a-man-really-need-to-apologise-for-Alice-Eves-underwear-scene.html

  • avatar
    Ron B.

    Being a carcentric blog, I guess most of the readers here would only know of Clarkson for his work on TG. But it goes a lot further than that. He is also a very capable producer ,director and writer and has done a lot of work for the BEEB over the last 20 years . (and is sitting on a pot of money…).
    For those who may be interested,this is a fine piece of work by Clarkson ;
    ” PQ17: An Arctic Convoy Disaster ” .

  • avatar
    jimbob457

    Alas, the TV show ran its course. Time to make a movie.

  • avatar
    Ron B.

    Oh No….! heaven help us .

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