Boris Johnson, arguably the closest politician Britain has to the reality TV-style credentials of Donald Trump, has resigned as Foreign Secretary over the UK’s Brexit strategy. In keeping with BoJo’s past political predilections, the news has erupted across social media as industry personalities and political and media commentators weigh in far and near. Boris Johnson is trending worldwide.
The flamboyant former Mayor of London and vocal Leave supporter quit the Tory frontbench today, hours after the departure of Brexit Secretary David Davis, following the release of Prime Minister Theresa May’s controversial Brexit plan, which essentially lays the ground for a soft exit from the European Union. A Downing Street spokesman said, “This afternoon, the prime minister accepted the resignation of Boris Johnson as Foreign Secretary. His replacement will be announced shortly. The prime minister thanks Boris for his work.”
Veep and The Death Of Stalin creator Armando Iannucci, one of the UK’s most colorful political comedians, tweeted, “As someone on our film crew’s just said: ‘You can always rely on Boris Johnson to be second over the parapet.’”
Among other famous folk offering musings Greg Jenner, producer of CBBC’s Horrible Histories, who suggested that Johnson may end up on ITV2 reality series Love Island by the weekend; and Gary Lineker, the former England footballer who is presenting the BBC’s coverage of the World Cup — the only other topic currently in the news more than Brexit. He joked Johnson “is the latest to hand in a transfer request as his team hurtle towards inevitable relegation.” Harry Potter creator JK Rowling has also been busy retweeting. (Check out more missives below.)
There was plenty of live coverage of Johnson’s resignation on the BBC News channel — which has bizarrely been running clips of the former London Mayor with an iguana — and other 24-hour news stations, although it hasn’t yet cut into the main schedules. It has also been covered by international media including Fox News and CNN with the latter’s Jake Tapper tweeting that May’s government is now in “turmoil” following the resignation.
Brexit has any number of implications for the film and TV industry and the deadline is fast approaching in March 2019. Downing Street has said May will fight any no-confidence vote that might arise in the wake of the past few days’ shake-ups.
Coincidentally, they come as Trump is preparing for his own visit to the UK later this week and could provide a distraction from the POTUS protests that are gearing up to see thousands of people descend into the capital, alongside a giant inflatable baby balloon.