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The Grand Tour, Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May’s first show since they left Top Gear has premiered on the Amazon Prime streaming service.

It is the first show to be fronted by the trio since they parted company with the BBC 18 months ago after Jeremy Clarkson punched a producer.

The Grand Tour will see them present from a different location every week.


Image source Amazon

Image source Amazon

Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May will be seen embarking on a series of challenges and stunts in a variety of vehicles around the world in the new show, Amazon have said.

The first episode of the series, which aired on November 18, sees the trio take their travelling studio tent to Dry Rabbit Lake in the Mojave Desert in California.

Vehicles featured in the episode included hybrid hyper-cars such as the McLaren P1, the Porsche 918 Spyder and the Ferrari LaFerrari.

The Grand Tour first series will consist of 12 hour-long episodes – with one being made available each week.

A total of 36 episodes across three years have been commissioned by Amazon.

Currently, only fans in the UK, America, Germany and Japan are able to watch the first episode, but Amazon has announced it will be launching the show globally in December.

The new series does not include features such as “star in a reasonably-priced car” or The Stig – as those belong to the BBC’s Top Gear format.

Matt LeBlanc and Chris Evans took over presenting duties on Top Gear after Jeremy Clarkson’s departure, although Evans departed after one series.

Jeremy Clarkson has previously said of The Grand Tour: “I think program one will be all right. I’d be extremely surprised if that was poorly reviewed.”

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Ex-Top Gear team – Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May – have reportedly signed up to present a new show on Amazon’s streaming video service, Amazon Prime.

Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May will front three series of a new motoring show for Amazon Prime, with the first season to be made available worldwide in 2016.

The move follows the team’s departure from Top Gear earlier this year.

Jeremy Clarkson’s contract was not renewed following an “unprovoked physical attack” on a Top Gear producer.

His co-hosts then followed him in leaving the show.

They will now make the unnamed new program with former Top Gear executive producer Andy Wilman, who also quit the BBC following the “fracas”.Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May to present Amazon Prime show

In a statement from Amazon, Jeremy Clarkson said: “I feel like I’ve climbed out of a biplane and into a spaceship.”

Richard Hammond said: “Amazon? Oh yes. I have already been there. I got bitten by a bullet ant.”

James May added: “We have become part of the new age of smart TV. Ironic, isn’t it?”

Amazon Prime Video EU vice-president Jay Marine said: “Customers told us they wanted to see the team back on screen, and we are excited to make that happen.

“We can’t wait to see what Jeremy, Richard, James and the team will create in what is sure to be one of the most globally anticipated shows of 2016.”

The Amazon deal is part of a company’s plan to compete with traditional broadcasters and streaming rivals like Netflix.

Amazon has also signed up Woody Allen to make his first television series; resurrected drama Ripper Street after it was canceled by the BBC; and won awards and acclaim for its dark comedy Transparent.

Meanwhile, Top Gear will continue on BBC Two, with Chris Evans among the new hosts.

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The final episode of Top Gear hosted by Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond was screened on Sunday, June 28.

The 75-minute special was compiled from footage shot before Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond left Top Gear.

The BBC Two show made no reference to their departure, nor the circumstances.

Closing the show, James May said: “Thank you very much for watching and, well, goodbye.”

Richard Hammond also said goodbye and the credits then rolled in silence.

After the episode ended, Jeremy Clarkson took to Twitter to say: “Many many thanks for all your support and encouragement over the years. So sad and sorry it’s ended like this.”Top Gear final episode with Jeremy Clarkson

Richard Hammond also tweeted: “Can’t believe that one life has room to accommodate the first and the last steps of that incredible adventure. Thanks for your company.”

The show was a swansong for Jeremy Clarkson – whose contract was not renewed after he punched a producer – as well as James May and Richard Hammond, who both turned down the opportunity to return to the series.

The final show featured two separate films – in the second installment, Jeremy Clarkson is seen stranded in a river, declaring: “I hate working on Top Gear.”

At the beginning of the show James May welcomed viewers by saying: “Hello, and welcome to what’s left of Top Gear.”

The show format featured James May and Richard Hammond presenting in an empty studio, without Jeremy Clarkson or the usual live audience.

Also visible in the studio was the “elephant in the room”, a 10ft plastic replica elephant from a Hull design company which the show’s makers borrowed, called Jeremy.

The episode is predicted to become the highest-rated episode in Top Gear history, beating the audience of 8.35 million who tuned in to see Lewis Hamilton’s appearance in December 2007.

Jeremy Clarkson recorded a new voiceover for the show, although he was not paid. Richard Hammond and James May filmed new links, but without the traditional Top Gear studio audience.

Writing in the Sun, Jeremy Clarkson had said: “BBC Two is screening an edition of Top Gear cobbled together from two films that were made before I was fired.

“One of them is quite good.”

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Former Top Gear co-host James May has been announced as the presenter of BBC Two’s new car show Building Cars Live.

Springwatch‘s Kate Humble will co-host along with Ant Antstead, presenter on Channel 4’s For the Love of Cars.

Building Cars Live will go behind the scenes of the UK’s car manufacturing industry to explain the science and engineering involved.

The new show will consist of two 90 minute live episodes and will air in the autumn.

The programs will track in real time the transformation from raw materials to finished vehicle and will broadcast live from BMW’s Mini plant in Oxford.James May hosts Building Cars Live

A press release from the BBC announcing the show included a quote from James May saying: “I can’t wait to build a car. Live.”

There had been speculation over James May’s future on Top Gear after Jeremy Clarkson was dropped by the broadcaster in March following a “fracas” with the show producer, Oisin Tymon.

There had been reports James May and fellow host Richard Hammond had been offered massive pay deals to stay with the show.

With the announcement this week that Chris Evans will take over Jeremy Clarkson’s role, it was confirmed the two former presenters would not be returning for Top Gear new series.

James May will be seen once more on Top Gear on Jeremy Clarkson’s final episode which will air on June 28.

James May and Richard Hammond will present links from the studio and it will feature two films shot before Clarkson was dropped from the show.

Meanwhile Chris Evans has announced open auditions to find replacements for James May and Richard Hammond.

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Top Gear trailer for Jeremy Clarkson’s final appearance has been released by the BBC.

The episode will feature two films shot before Jeremy Clarkson was suspended from Top Gear and eventually sacked.

To Gear co-presenters Richard Hammond and James May return to the studio to present links from the studio, with Jeremy Clarkson noticeably absent.

No date has been given for transmission, and the broadcaster has yet to decide how Top Gear may return.

Top Gear was pulled from the schedules after Jeremy Clarkson’s suspension for attacking a producer earlier this year.

Footage shot for the three remaining episodes has now been compiled in to one extended program.Jeremy Clarkson final Top Gear episode

It contains two films which, in classic Top Gear style, feature cheap bangers, caravans and a race to the finish line for the three presenters to avoid a forfeit.

Earlier this week, rumors circulated that Chris Evans was being groomed to take over the Top Gear hotseat from Jeremy Clarkson, after the Radio 2 DJ revealed he was making a “Top Gear sequence”.

It later emerged that the film was part of Chris Evans one-off edition of TFI Friday, in which his friend Jeremy Clarkson will appear.

Chris Evans has ruled himself out of the Top Gear job on a number of occasions.

There has also been speculation that the show could return with a different guest host every week.

It was reported last week Richard Hammond and James May had been offered £1 million ($1.5 million) deals to stay with the BBC, although they themselves have seemed to distance themselves from returning.

Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May have been appearing together in a series of live shows, which were originally meant to be under the Top Gear banner, but have since been rebranded Clarkson, Hammond and May Live and stripped of all BBC branding.

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Andy Wilman has decided to quit Top Gear in the wake of Jeremy Clarkson’s departure, the BBC has confirmed.

Jeremy Clarkson, 55, was dropped from the show on March 25 following a “fracas” with a producer.

Top Gear executive producer Andy Wilman, who was an old school friend of Jeremy Clarkson, helped reinvent the show and oversaw its growth into a globally successful program.Andy Wilman Top Gear

Co-presenter Richard Hammond has also confirmed his intention to walk away.

Richard Hammond, whose contract expired last month, wrote on Twitter: “To be clear, amidst all this talk of us <<quitting>> or not: There’s nothing for me to <<quit>>.

“Not about to quit my mates anyway.”

Andy Wilman had previously denied he was leaving Top Gear, after a leaked email was interpreted as a farewell note to colleagues.

Yesterday, James May said he would not return to Top Gear without Jeremy Clarkson.

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James May has said he will not return to Top Gear without Jeremy Clarkson, who was dropped from the BBC on March 25.

The Top Gear co-host told the Guardian: “Me and Hammond with a surrogate Jeremy is a non-starter. It has to be the three of us.”

James May added that Top Gear without Jeremy Clarkson would be a “tough call” and “a bit of a daft idea”.

Jeremy Clarkson, 55 was removed from Top Gear after fracas with producer Oisin Tymon.Jeremy Clarkson James May Top Gear

“I don’t think you could carry on with two people and put someone in as the new Jeremy because they are not going to be the new Jeremy,” James May said.

“That would be short-sighted and I don’t think it would work. Virtually impossible.”

James May changed his Twitter account to say “former Top Gear presenter” on March 25, the day it was announced Jeremy Clarkson’s contract with BBC would not be renewed.

His contract, and that of his co-presenter Richard Hammond, expired last month.

It raises the possibility of an entirely new presenting line-up for Top Gear.

Channel controller Kim Shillinglaw has been given the job of finding a replacement for Jeremy Clarkson, with former X Factor host Dermot O’Lear and Jodie Kidd rumored to be in the running.

However, James May has said there “might be an opportunity for three of us to get back together on the BBC to do Top Gear or a car show of some sort”.

“The BBC haven’t completely closed the door on Jeremy’s return,” he told the Guardian.

“They’ve not banned him or fired him, only just not renewed his contract for the moment. It’s a subtle difference, but an important one.”

Earlier this week, Kim Shillinglaw also stressed there was no ban on Jeremy Clarkson returning to the BBC, despite director general Tony Hall’s decision to fire him last month, saying “a line has been crossed”.

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Jeremy Clarkson will return to the BBC”, Kim Shillinglaw, the head of BBC 2 and BBC 4, has said.

Kim Shillinglaw, who has the task of finding Jeremy Clarkson’s replacement after he was dropped from Top Gear, said he had not been banned by the BBC.

“It’s serious and unfortunate what happened but there is no ban on Jeremy being on the BBC,” Kim Shillinglaw said.

“It’s a big deal what happened and Jeremy, as any human being would, needs some time.”

Jeremy Clarkson, 55, was removed from Top Gear on March 25 after assaulting producer Oisin Tymon.

Kim Shillinglaw said it was an “open book” on who might replace Jeremy Clarkson, following rumors it could be a woman.

She said: “We’ll definitely look at some women but it’s not a driving priority.” Jeremy Clarkson BBC return

Kim Shillinglaw also confirmed Jeremy Clarkson’s final Top Gear scenes would be screened later this year

“No way would I want the available material not to be seen by viewers,” she said.

However, there is not enough footage to piece together the three remaining episodes of Top Gear, which was pulled off air in the aftermath of the altercation with Oisin Tymon on March 4.

Sue Perkins, the host of BBC One’s The Great British Bake Off, was named the bookmakers’ favorite to replace Jeremy Clarkson two weeks ago.

She was the front-runner for the job, followed by Dermot O’Leary and Jodie Kidd.

The news prompted a barrage of abusive tweets for Sue Perkins, whose Twitter timeline was filled with “blokes wishing me dead”, including threats from someone who “suggested they’d like to see me burn to death”.

Sue Perkins later quit Twitter, leading Jeremy Clarkson’s co-presenter James May to suggest those who sent the abusive tweets should “do the world a much bigger favor by killing yourself”.

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Jeremy Clarkson will appear on rebranded Top Gear Live shows with his fellow presenters Richard Hammond and James May.

A deal has been done to fulfill a series of live shows that were planned before Jeremy Clarkson was dropped from the show for hitting Top Gear producer Oisin Tymon.

The shows will be stripped of all BBC branding and content and will be called Clarkson, Hammond and May Live.

The first live show will take place in Belfast on May 22.

BBC said it had agreed the tour could continue “so as to not disappoint fans”.Top Gear Live Jeremy Clarkson

A spokesman called it “a sensible approach in the circumstances”.

Thousands of people around the world had already bought tickets.

A spokesman for Brand Events, who are co-producing the shows, said they wanted to thank “ticket holders for their continued patience”.

“The fans are the most important people to Jeremy, Richard and James so we’re delighted to be able to say <<we’re still coming>>. We’re sure it’ll be something you won’t want to miss.”

Top Gear Live shows will take place in venues around the world including Australia, Norway, South Africa and the UK.

Live shows that were due to take place in Stavanger, Norway earlier this month have been re-scheduled to June 20 and 21.

A Top Gear Festival planned for Sydney in April will instead become an indoor arena show staged in both Melbourne on July 18-19 and Sydney on July 25 -26.

Top Gear Live show dates are:

  • May 22 – 24 – Belfast
  • June 5 – 7 – Sheffield
  • June 13 – 14 – South Africa
  • June 20-21 – Norway
  • November 28 – 29 – London O2

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Andy Wilman, the executive producer of BBC’s motoring show Top Gear, has announced he is not quitting the show after Jeremy Clarkson’s departure.

A leaked email from Andy Wilman to Top Gear staff had seemed to suggest he was resigning, but he said it was a private “note of thanks” marking the an end of an era.

Andy Wilman, an old school friend of Jeremy Clarkson, helped re-launch Top Gear in 2002.

Jeremy Clarkson, 54, was dropped by the broadcaster earlier this month following a “fracas” with show producer Oisin Tymon.

Andy Wilman has issued a statement about the email, saying: “The email I wrote yesterday was not a resignation statement, and nor was it meant for public consumption.

“It was a private note of thanks to 113 people who have worked on the show over the years, but clearly one of those 113 is a bit of a tit, because they shared it with a website.

“I don’t get this modern obsession with sharing, linking, forwarding, retweeting; whatever happened to a private moment?

“And if I were to resign, I wouldn’t do it publicly, I’d do it old school by handing in my, er, notice, to someone upstairs in HR.

“I work behind the camera and I wouldn’t presume for one moment to think people are interested in what I do. Now, everyone back to work.”

Photo Top Gear

Photo Top Gear

In the leaked email Andy Wilman started with: “Well, at least we left ’em wanting more.

“And that alone, when you think about it, is quite an achievement for a show that started 13 years ago.”

As well as thanking staff, he assured them that the show will continue.

“For those of you who still rely on it for work, don’t worry, because the BBC will make sure the show continues.

“Our stint as guardians of Top Gear was a good one, but we were only part of the show’s history, not the whole of it. Those two words are bigger than us.”

BBC director general Tony Hall announced on March 25 that the broadcaster would not be renewing Jeremy Clarkson’s contract.

Jeremy Clarkson was suspended on March 10, following what was called a “fracas” Oisin Tymon.

The row, which took place in a Yorkshire hotel, was said to have occurred because no hot food was provided following a day’s filming.

There is no news yet as to whether Top Gear presenters James May and Richard Hammond will return to the show.

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