Piers Morgan: I'm a better interviewer than Jonathan Ross, Graham Norton and Alan Carr

The former Britain's Got Talent judge isn't known for his modesty

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The Independent Culture

He's never been lacking in confidence, but former tabloid editor Piers Morgan has claimed he's a better interviewer than British rivals Graham Norton, Alan Carr and Jonathan Ross.

The former Mirror and News of the World editor, who now hosts Life Stories on ITV and Piers Morgan Live on US network CNN, was asked by the Radio Times whether he was the best in the business.

"Yes," he said, unsurprisingly. "Because I don't think that my so-called rivals do what I do.

"I'm the only person who sits down with people on TV for two or three hours to truncate to a one-hour show. So I think I'm almost in a category of my own.

"I can't compete with Graham Norton for the comedy he brings and I think he's got a terrific show. Or Jonathan Ross. Or Alan Carr. They're all entertainers and comedians, really."

The interview then turned to broadcast veteran Sir Michael Parkinson. Morgan was asked whether he'd like to be the next Parky.

"No. He might like to be the next Piers Morgan," he said. "I like Parky but he doesn't think anyone else could ever come anywhere close to being as good as him."

However, it is the late Sir David Frost that Morgan considers the best interviewer he had seen.

"If you look at the early stuff. He took lots of people apart," he said. "Frost on the rampage was an incredible spectacle on television - he was a firecracker interviewer. And the Nixon thing was an incredible tour de force because it showed all his qualities."

Morgan's own ITV show, which has featured celebrities such as Dannii Minogue, Richard Branson and Julie Goodyear, is renowned for getting its high-profile guests to turn on the waterworks. But the presenter insisted that wasn't the aim.

"You don't want to become known as just the crying show," he said. "I never want it to look forced. I never want to push somebody... It's not that I'm punching the air going, 'Goody, they're crying.' I feel it's just reflective of their character.

"Rod Stewart is never going to cry in an interview with me in a million years even though he's been through stuff that's very hurtful to him. Simon Cowell teared up and that's because I knew where to go where I thought we might get a surprising emotion... different to the normal, self-confident guy."