Jonathan Ross signs chat show deal with ITV
Wednesday 07 July 2010
Jonathan Ross has signed a deal to present a chat show for ITV, it was announced today.
The presenter - who leaves his BBC1 show next week when his contract with the corporation runs out - is to begin his new series late next year.
He had been in negotiations with Channel 4 at one stage prior to new chief executive David Abraham taking over this summer.
The series will air in a peak-time slot on ITV1 after a year's break for Ross.
The star had a spectacular fall from grace over the "Sachsgate" affair in which he left lewd messages - along with Russell Brand - on the answerphone of veteran actor Andrew Sachs. He was suspended for three months over the incident.
Earlier this year Ross announced he would not be renewing his contract with the BBC, and his long-running Radio 2 show will come to an end this month.
He said today: "I am thrilled and excited that after a short break I will be rolling up my sleeves and creating a brand new show for ITV1.
"I have worked successfully with most of the key figures at the network in the past and cannot wait to get back on screen with a fast, funny, and unpredictable new talk show.
"I do have a little spare time at the beginning of 2011 though, so if England needs a temporary new manager I will consider the post seriously. Thank you."
He is due to host the British Comedy Awards later this year, which will be broadcast by Channel 4.
The new series will be a co-production between ITV Studios and Hotsauce TV, the company set up by Ross which makes his current BBC1 show.
His final BBC chat show airs a week on Friday with a line-up which features David Beckham and Hollywood star Jackie Chan.
Ross's new one-year deal will see him producing 18 programmes.
Peter Fincham, ITV director of television, said: "From Hollywood stars through to British politicians, Jonathan Ross has interviewed them all and has long established himself as the pre-eminent chat show host of his generation.
"ITV1 has established itself as a home for the UK's top television stars, and I'm delighted that the channel will now be working with Jonathan on this exciting new show."
Other high-profile signings for ITV recently have included Adrian Chiles and Christine Bleakley. The former One Show hosts will be reunited on the GMTV sofa later this year.
Ross previously presented ITV series The Big Big Talent Show during the late 1990s.
In recent months he has expanded his creative outlets by becoming a comic book writer with his Turf series.
Ross declared on Twitter last month that he was going to take a "gap year" after his current shows end.
He wrote: "As for me, I have decided that after my shows finish in three weeks... gap year!!! When I say gap year I will still be twittering and writing comics."
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