A few days after Jeremy Clarkson ended weeks of speculation and confirmed that his new car show had landed at Amazon, reuniting him with his former Top Gear colleagues James May and Richard Hammond for an Amazon Prime series, Amazon execs got asked what ground rules, if any, they’d set for Clarkson in terms of language, slurs and staff assaults.
Clarkson, whose BBC contract was allowed to expire after he assaulted Top Gear producer Oisin Tymon, confirmed via Twitter ” “I’m very excited to announce that Hammond, May and I have signed a deal with @AmazonVideo.” Former Top Gear exec producer Andy Wilman will also return for the as-yet-unnamed show, which will go into production in time to drop next year.
Amazon Studios chief Roy Price said this morning at TCA he prefers to “not think a lot” about such things, in re questions about Clarkson’s slurs and physical altercations. He did reveal, however, that he feels “very bullish” that fans around the world are going to love the show.
“With all due respect,” shot back a TV critic, given that Clarkson’s former boss, BBC, felt along the way it had to apologize or explain to reporters and viewers after Clarkson made various remarks about Mexicans, and Asians, and women, and, of course that getting physical incident, “have you had discussions what what he can say or not say”, the critic said, adding, or is the plan to just hope he doesn’t “mess up”?
“I can’t comment on details of the discussion,” or the contract,” Price responded. But, he admitted, “we’re bullish about the show and think it will turn out well.”
The deal was considered a coup for Amazon, despite the cloud of controversy that hung over Clarkson’s exit from BBC, because Netflix, ITV and Sky, all had been spoken of as possible landing posts at different times for the instantly recognizable global brand, noted Deadline.