Krishnan Guru-Murthy on Richard Ayoade: 'Interviewing famous people on their latest project is like commuting for me too'

The presenter reacted to criticism over his "awkward" interview with the IT actor in a 10-part blog post on the Channel 4 News website

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The Independent Online

Krishnan Guru-Murthy has had the last word after a particularly traumatic Tuesday night interview with Richard Ayoade.

In the four-minute promotional Channel 4 News segment, the comedian pulled his line of questioning apart with a series of deadpan answers that reduced the presenter  ̶  and an out-of-shot Jon Snow  ̶  to nervous fits of laughter.

"I don’t dislike interviews, it’s a bit more like commuting. I accept it as a part of this, but no one, you know, loves it," Ayoade bluntly said at one point.

Elsewhere during the conversation, he batted away Guru-Murthy's attempt to clarify his position on whether he felt, as a person of ethnic origin (he is half Nigerian and half Norwegian), he had a responsibility to other black actors to champion their achievement in the entertainment industry.

After a sarcastic reply, Guru-Murthy asked whether he felt he was a role model for other Norwegians, to which Ayoade responded: "I do, and I feel that Norway as a nation looks to me and my activities, in many ways to marshal any kind of policies they can drum up, and have been doing so for a while."

"I get that. But give me something in return…" Guru-Murthy countered.

"What do you want? That was not a good chat-up line," he replied.

Guru-Murthy largely took the brunt of criticism from the press for his seeming failure to regain control of the situation.

And it seems he finally has, in a ten-part blog post about the interview on the Channel 4 website, during which he declares he wasn’t out-witted by the IT star, but insists they were just "having a laugh".

"Interviewing famous people about their latest project is a bit like commuting for me too," point six reads. "Nobody enjoys it. It is just a mostly inescapable part of getting an interview with an artist or celebrity."

"I had hoped Richard might then be tempted into saying something real about diversity. But he didn’t," he wrote in point five. "On the other hand, I did."

In point four, he explained that, "Norwegians are arguably as important a minority as Nigerians," but said it wasn’t why he had asked Ayoade that particular question.

 

He also revealed that Ayoade had asked "in advance" to be interviewed by Guru-Murthy, "because he wanted to talk about my encounter with Tarantino".

"He highlighted the thing I’ve always thought most interesting about that too: the fury of a man who only wants his side of the Faustian pact."

"I thought it was the perfect joke interview, in which the guest, the interviewer and the viewers were all in on a joke that actually had something serious to say too," he concluded in point ten.

His reaction comes as news that he broke up a verbal office brawl between fellow Channel 4 anchor Jon Snow and Tory MP Philip Davies.

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