The rumor mill over where former Top Gear presenters Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May will land with their new show continues to grind on. ITV, Netflix, Amazon and Hulu all remain in the mix, according to a series of conflicting reports. ITV did appear to be a strong bet with Clarkson reportedly keen to go directly against his old show in the same terrestrial timeslot. That plan, however, appears to have been kiboshed by the news that Clarkson and his colleagues have two year non-compete clauses in their BBC contracts that prevents them from joining a direct rival until April 2017, according to the UK’s Mirror newspaper. That doesn’t mean a deal with ITV can’t be done, just that any driving-themed show would either need to be so different as to not constitute a competitor to BBC’s Top Gear, or the show itself could not be centered around cars.
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Reps for the trio were staying tight-lipped when contacted by Deadline. Similarly, ITV sources simply offered a,” we haven’t commented, and aren’t planning to comment, on the speculation” comment when approached by Deadline.
Similarly Netflix reps had no official update on the status of any potential negotiations. Clarkson, however, has indirectly revealed he has been in talks with a U.S.-based company for some time. Writing in his Sunday Times column with reference to how he has curbed his drinking, the combative presenter wrote, “Californians have a habit of ringing at 11pm, and I realised I couldn’t think as straight as they do with their leaves and mineral water existence if I was halfway through my third bottle of Leoube.’
Netflix remains odds-on favorite with bookies in the UK, with Paddy Power offering odds of 6/4 that the new show will eventually land there. Clarkson left Top Gear in March after his contract was not renewed by the BBC after he was found by a BBC investigation to have verbally and physically assaulted producer Oison Tymon at a North Yorkshire hotel.
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