Jonathan Ross To Leave BBC
January 7, 2010 at 4:30 AM (PT)
British radio and TV personality JONATHAN ROSS announced TODAY that he will leave the BBC in JULY after 13 years with the network. ROSS, one of BRITAIN's most well-known media figures, most recently hosted a weekend show on AC BBC RADIO 2 and a weekly talk/variety show on BBC1 television.
He was suspended for his role in the "SACHSGATE" controversy when he and RUSSELL BRAND left rude messages on actor ANDREW SACHS' voicemail; his contract is also the subject of controversy as part of the general discussion of talent and management salaries at the publicly-financed network.
ROSS released a statement that said, "Although I have had a wonderful time working for the BBC, and am very proud of the shows I have made while there, over the last two weeks I have decided not to re-negotiate when my current contract comes to an end. While there I have worked with some of the nicest and most talented people in the industry and had the opportunity to interview some of the biggest stars in the world, and am grateful to the BBC for such a marvellous experience. I would like to make it perfectly clear that no negotiations ever took place and that my decision is not financially motivated.
"I signed my current contract with the BBC having turned down more lucrative offers from other channels because it was where I wanted to be and -- as I have said before -- would happily have stayed there for any fee they cared to offer, but there were other considerations. I love making my FRIDAY night talk show, my SATURDAY morning radio show and THE FILM PROGRAMME, and will miss them all. I look forward to continuing work on these shows until the SUMMER, and I will continue hosting the BAFTA FILM AWARDS, COMIC RELIEF and other BBC specials.
"Working at the BBC has been a tremendous privilege, and I would like to thank everyone who has watched and listened so loyally over the last 13 years."