James May, Richard Hammond and Jeremy Clarkson are said to have been in talks with TV networks and online video streaming companies for weeks now to present a new automobile show which will be unscripted and compete with Top Gear, which will be now re-launched with new host Chris Evans.
The BBC sacked Clarkson, 55, for verbally and physically assaulting producer Oisin Tymon during a taping of a Top Gear Series 22 episode. He had been the show’s host in several incarnations since 1988. He took a break from 1999 to 2002 when the show was relaunched with the addition of Hammond and May as co-presenters. American talent agency William Morris Endeavor (WME) is reportedly among those advising the former hosts as they embark on their next chapter.
Netflix sounds like a great deal for Clarkson, Hammond and May to continue their motoring show antics, but there’s a little problem with moving across the pond.
It’s no secret that the boys and Andy Wilman are negotiating with ITV higher-ups, but a newly published report from The Mirror tells us that “the boys believe with the backing of ITV and a prime-time slot they can easily match, and probably beat, their BBC2 viewing figures”. During the past decade “Top Gear” became one of the BBC’s most-watched and most widely exported programs. The company is also in the midst of an aggressive push to expand its reach in Europe and the United Kingdom. Netflix now carries past seasons of “Top Gear” going back to 2011. Plus, having new, original seasons of the British car-driven show aligns with Netflix’s global expansion plans and its foray into the United Kingdom market with original series The Queen.