Two of the BBC’s most high profile presenters (both co-incidently named Jeremy) have been in the news this week.  One is leaving, and a petition is circulating demanding that the Beeb sack the other one. Meanwhile Channel 4 says bye to Scandal, Kerry Washington says ‘hi’, and John Boyega says YES!

 

Jeremy Paxman is to leave Newsnight after 25 years presenting the show. 

paxmanApparently there had been simmering tensions between Paxman and senior management for a while. Last month, Paxman said in an interview that the corporation was “smug” and complained about how Radio 1Xtra being played in the lifts was “hell”.

According to sources, the incident prompted James Harding, the director of BBC News, to send a note reprimanding Paxman for his public criticism of the corporation.  Also an email was sent to the outgoing Newsnight host by Ben Cooper, the controller of Radio 1Xtra, in which he told Paxman to “take the stairs” if he did not like the station’s music being played in the lifts.

Paxman’s departure presents a golden opportunity for the Beeb to add a dash of youth and colour to its stale, male and pale palette. Let’s hope they recognise this opportunity and not make like Manchester United and fall into the trap of trying to repeat previous success by employing another clone.  If they are looking for someone who sneers at the MPs that he’s interviewing Krishnan Guru-Murthy is pretty good at that.

In the meantime, if you need to remind yourself why Paxman was so feared and respected an interviewer, The Guardian have compiled this Top 10 list of his best bits.

 

 

Jeremy Clarkson in yet another race row.

At the start of last week, The Daily Mirror ran a story about Clarkson using the n-word in some unseen footage from Top Gear.

Clarkson’s initially denied it but the DailyMirror helpfully provided this video clip of him dropping the ‘N-bomb’.

After the exposure Clarkson then made a grovelling apology, no doubt hooping that would be enough to save his skin.  In case you missed it, here it is again.

Clarkson’s  new found humility apparently came after a meeting with senior BBC managers who told him that they were very very cross, and if it happened again they might think about doing something about it. By Friday there was a petition circulating demanding that Clarkson be sacked.

I know that Top Gear is an international hit for the BBC, but how long will they continue to protect this out- dated bigot?  Who else does he have to offend before they give him his walking papers?  If they do ever do the right thing and give him the push,  I’ve got a suggestion for a new career for Clarkson. With his old-fashioned right wing views and continual outpourings of offensive gaffs, he would make an excellent candidate for Ukip.

Here’s what we had to say.

 

Channel 4 say ‘Goodbye’ to Scandal

scandal-imageWhilst we in the Uk campaign for greater diversity on our screens, over in the US they seemed to have worked out that greater diversity = higher ratings and are not afraid to have a Black female as the lead in a drama series.  But fans of Scandal fans will be saddened to learn Channel 4 has decided to drop the popular series from their roster after only two seasons, releasing  a statement saying  – “We appreciate that this may be disappointing news to fans of the show, and decisions like these are never taken lightly, but please be assured that, as always, we’re striving to bring other new and exciting shows to the channel.”

By that I hope they mean progs like that other Shonda Rhimes penned Grey’s Anatomy or BET’s Being Mary Jane rather than more home-grown shit like My Crazy New Jamaican Life.

Meanwhile the series created by Shonda Rhimes which stars Kerry Washington in the lead role as the ‘Fixer’ Olivia Pope continues to grow from strength to strength in the states with series 3 just ending on a high with 10.5 million viewers.

 

Kerry Washington says ‘hi’

15th Annual Warner Bros and InStyle Golden Globe Awards After Party

But I’m sure Kerry Washington is not weeping over Channel 4’s decision.

She’s too busy celebrating the birth of her new baby. Last month Washington and her husband  Nnamdi Asomugha — welcomed their first daughter, Isabelle Amarachi Asomugha to the world.

According to TMZ, Washington gave birth on April 21 in Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. Congrats to the both of them.

Announcement of Star Wars VII cast brings good news.

John_Boyega_Verge_Jeff_Vespa_1And congrats are also in order to Britain’s own John Boyega as he is confirmed amongst the cast for the new Star Wars movie.
On April 29th Starwars.com updated fans on the cast of the highly anticipated latest instalment of the Sci-fi franchise.
Actors John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, and Max von Sydow will join the original stars of the saga, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, and Kenny Baker in the new film.
Boyega
burst onto the scene in 2011 co-starring in Joe Cornish-penned Attack the Block and online Being Human spin-off series, Becoming Human.  Since then he was the lead role in BBC drama My Murder, had a supporting role in Nigerian-set movie Half of A Yellow Sun alongside Thandie Newton and Chiwetal Ejifor,  and has a role in the upcoming series 24: Live Another Day.
Maybe when he’s done blowing up in Hollywood, he can do like Idris and come back to Blighty and get his own TV series.

 

 

That’s all for this week (there’s no ‘ funniest thing I’ve seen on-line his week’ as I thought Clarkson’s apology served that purpose), but if you just can’t hang on for another seven days to get your next fix of TV industry news, check our facebook page for daily updates.

Lee Pinkerton