Want to be the next Top Gear Host? Jeremy Clarkson dismissal prompts Open Casting Call

top gear

Ever dreamed of working on Top Gear? How about being a host on Top Gear? Well here's you chance.

Top Gear and BBC producers announced yesterday that they are holding an open casting call for the wildly popular TV show about cars.  After the dismissal of the well known and charismatic Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson earlier this month.  The reason Clarkson was let go from the show seems to be the fact that he threw a punch at one of the Top Gear producers.

Even though Jeremy Clarkson has left Top Gear, the show must go on and the Top Gear production team has decided to run open casting calls. What does that mean? Basically anyone with some automotive media experience and a desire to be the new Top Gear host can apply.  They are inviting people to send in applications for the job via the official Top Gear website.  This is a bit unusual as a position as important as this usually isn't how producers find a replacement. You would expect the BBC and Top Gear production would reach out to potential hosts to fill Clarkson's role with the other hosts James May and Richard Hammond.  Inside sources have reported that the producers for the BBC and Top Gear have been scrambling to find a replacement and this statement by Andy Wilman stated on the application page shows why they are doing this;

“Initially we were only holding discussions with a select few we thought would be ideal to replace Jeremy Clarkson. However, due to scheduling or contractual requirements none of these hosts will work for next season's Top Gear in the short term.”

Once the page went up on the Top Gear website announcing the open casting call, the website was flooded with traffic and applications.  It brought down the server for several hours last night but the Top Gear web hosting and site team seems to have resolved any issues now.  The site and page is back up and running. It's been reported from several sources that there have been tens of thousands of applications since the open casting announcement.  An update on the page reads;

The Top Gear producers put some requirements here but many seemed to have been ignored by the excitement over this open casting call.

Still the requirements are pretty open considering choosing a new Top Gear host is no easy task.  On the page it says, “The new host should ideally be British but we are open to considering a new host who is not from the United Kingdom.  However, you must be a native English speaker and have grown up in a country where English is a native language.”  I assume this includes the United States, Canada, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and some other countries.

Ideally applicants should submit work showing 3+ years of past work within the auto media industry.  This can include written work in online or print publications, radio, TV, or online shows.  Credentials with an auto media organization are also preferred.  Andy Wilman says does say;

We will look at anyone who we think can truly fill Jeremy Clarkson's shoes.  Experience is preferred but does don't matter.

Another part of the application is submitting a video of yourself hosting and talking, explaining why you should be chosen.  You will need to be good on TV after all and obviously you will have to have good on air chemistry with Richard Hammond and James May.  They are planning on doing screen tests for potential hosts at the end of the summer.

Letting Jeremy Clarkson go has put the BBC in precarious position. Top Gear isn't just another show for media conglomerate, since it funds lots of TV shows they produce which do not make money.  Top Gear is arguable the crown jewel of the BBC as has hundreds of millions of viewers across the globe and is broadcast in many different countries and varied languages.  Top Gear is a huge cash cow an revenue machine for the BBC.  The production team is worried letting Jeremy Clarkson go and leaving Richard Hammond and James May could potentially not work.  Top Gear USA was cancelled due to a poor ratings and high productions costs. The BBC and Top Gear want to avoid the “Top Gear America disaster and horror” as one producer put it.

It's hard to know what Top Gear producers are looking for but it seems they are trying to cast a wide net and see what they turn up.  I imagine they will continue to be flooded with applications in the coming weeks.  The window for applying closes at the end of this month, so that should give any potential hosts out there a chance to apply to be the next Top Gear host.

Will you be applying to be the next Top Gear host? What would you do if you replaced Jeremy Clarkson?

Happy April 1st Everyone! 🙂

Top Gear USA Cancelled, Thank the Car Gods!

top gear usa
Top Gear USA Cancelled

 

If you are reading this, than you will be happy to hear Top Gear USA has been cancelled.  Thank the car gods!

History Channel decided to cancel Top Gear America after ratings have been in a steady decline.  While the show still ranks well in History Channel's overall cable line-up the high cost of production makes it hard to justify the continued cost to make the show.  The licensing fees that the BBC charges for use of the Top Gear brand in the US go up each year according to people who worked on the contractual agreements with the BBC.  This is a major factor for Top Gear USA getting cancelled since you can't bankroll a show that doesn't make money, even if some idiots like the show.

Finances are not the only reason for the Top Gear USA getting cancelled.  Rumors swirled that the 3 hosts of the American version of Top Gear; Adam Ferrara, Tanner Foust, and Rutledge Wood have been fighting off the show.  Inside sources claim the three of them claim get along fine on camera but really don't behind-the-scenes.  Apparently Adam Ferrara wanted both Rutledge Wood and Tanner Foust off the show as he felt he was the best host.  He even told the producers, and both hosts to their faces, that they should be replaced by people that are actually smart and funny.

Insiders close to the show have said that comments from Ferrara infuriated Tanner Foust so much he got into bit of a brawl with the New York comedian.  “Ferrara kicked Foust's ass” is what one source told me.  Wood seems to be more chill about the situation and it seems he will just go back to his position reporting full time on the NASCAR circuit.  History Channel and the producers for the show apparently had strongly considered replacing both Tanner Foust and Rutledge Wood with other hosts when the show aired early on but nothing ever came of it.  Wood would have been easy to replace but finding a driver that was a good TV host was a more difficult task for the producers who used a BBC subsidiary for production.

Top Gear America was cancelled for another reason, it was giving people eye cancer since the show was so bad.  Reports from Ophthalmologists and Oncologists around the US, and around the world, have filed complaints and sent letters to the History Channel.  Most of these doctors are saying the same thing, that Top Gear USA is so terrible people can get eye cancer from watching the show for even short periods of time.  “Your chances of contracting eye cancer from watching Top Gear USA is almost guaranteed and we have seen some severe cases recently.  Short periods of watching the show might be alright but if you have been exposed at all we recommend you go to a hospital immediately to get checked.” said Dr. Gomes who is head of Oncology at Brigham Hospital in Blue Balls, Pennsylvania.  When asked about how many cases and if men or women were more affected, “We mainly see men getting cancer from Top Gear USA.  It's not quite as severe as when people watch Keeping up with the Kardashians, but pretty close.  We definitely see more women with Kardashian eye cancer.  With regards to Top Gear USA eye cancer we've seen a thousands of cases here in Blue Balls.”  When I asked about the original Top Gear UK on the BBC Dr. Gomes replied, “I love watching Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond.  Unsure of how any other car show could compare to them.”  He also reassured me that all his patients were able to make full recoveries from the Top Gear America cancer.  The cure is pretty simple, full episodes of Top Gear UK on DVD for several days in a row.

Happy April 1st Everyone! 🙂

*Note if you are not aware of what April 1st is you should Google it.

Top Gear Fan builds a McLaren F1 from Scratch [VIDEO]

Someone sent me this cool video this morning of a Top Gear fan that built a homemade McLaren F1.  Checkout the video here and let me know what you think below.

A Top Gear fanatic has completed the ultimate motor challenge – building a £5million supercar with scrap and spare parts. Amateur mechanic Jacek Mazur, 48, made his own replica McLaren F1 for just £20,000 – 250 times cheaper than the real thing. He even paid tribute to his favourite TV show by building a tiny rear seat for Top Gear co-host Richard Hammond. His previous projects have included building his own Lamborghini and a Porsche – but the British-designed McLaren F1 has been his ‘ultimate' success. They can fetch unbelievable sums and in August this year one sold for a staggering £5.1million at classic car auction Gooding & Company.

Top Gear Season 20 Trailer [VIDEO]

Yesterday the Top Gear released the Top Gear Season 20 Trailer.  Of course since gearheads and auto enthusiasts love Top Gear so the internet has been abuzz with excitement over the trailer with the three hosts, James May, Richard Hammond, and Jeremy Clarkson.

Let me know what you think of the Top Gear Season 20 Trailer in the comments below.

History Channel, Please Cancel Top Gear

top gear
Top Gear

History Channel, Please Cancel Top Gear

Unfortunately real Top Gear fans keep having to endure more of what I would called garbage TV, Top Gear US. It's disappointing that the History Channel has not canceled Top Gear yet and I plead with you History channel, can you please cancel Top Gear?

For most gearheads Top Gear isn't just a show, it's an obsession. For those that love the show, and I mean the British Broadcasting Corporation's (BBC) original version, there is no better television show on the planet.

For those that are not familiar, Top Gear features three British auto journalists, Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond. The show is comprised of car reviews, putting stars in a reasonable priced car or on a racetrack, and generally crazy antics in moving vehicles or vehicles with wheels of some sort.

If you were to ask anyone gearhead (or petrolhead as they say in England) about Top Gear, more than likely you will hear, “Top Gear is the greatest show EVER!” I concur!

Fans, like myself, of the one and only good and original Top Gear on the BBC, feel the History channel needs to stop. Please, please CANCEL Top Gear USA! We don't like it, we don't want it, and we really, really hate it. We rather have you re-run episodes of the original on the History channel.

Sure, Top Gear USA might be doing good business for the History channel. There is no doubting that. I am sure all of the History channel execs are pleased with their Nielsen ratings.

The thing is, for anyone who has brain that actually functions and that has seen the original Top Gear UK, why would you want to watch Top Gear USA? It lacks, the originality and chutzpah of the BBC version with the three awful American hosts, Adam Ferrara, Tanner Foust and Rutledge Wood.

Tanner Foust, a professional drift car driver, has little in the way of natural camera ability. Most of the time it feels like he is reading from a script, which I am fairly sure he did not write himself. Rutledge Wood, is the fun loving pudgy one out of the bunch. Somehow he just doesn't work either and it also seems like he reads from scripts which he clearly did not write himself.

Adam Ferrara, while I don't want to admit it… is actually quite good. (I might be biased, since I firmly believe all people named “Adam” are cool.) He is quick on his feet and is able to carry himself on camera well. No doubt working as a stand-up comic and actor, gives him an edge over the other two hosts. However, he can't carry the show for the other two and the three lack chemistry.

Top Gear USA just feels like a rehashed version of the original, which is not as good. Most of the episodes give the feeling of Deja-Vu of the BBC original.

I hate to say this, but we Americans have a serious problem of taking good British TV shows, and completely ruining them. Anyone ever heard of The Office? Now Julian Fellowes is creating an American “Downton Abbey” which I am fairly sure will not live up to standards of the original British Downton Abbey.

Besides Top Gear UK has been able to get some pretty impressive American stars on the show.  This includes Tom Cruise, Cameron Diaz, Andy Garcia, and even Slash from Guns N' Roses.

Even with History channel's success with Top Gear USA, I highly doubt it will continue to grow. Being among the coveted young demographic that History is so keen on, I realized something… most 20-30 year-olds, don't have cable.

Young people are used to watching TV and movies over the internet on services like Netflix, Hulu, and if necessary ripping shows they like. On top of that cable subscriptions have declined during this horrendous economy. Most young people are part of a generation of CableNevers meaning we have never subscribed to cable.

You can watch Top Gear USA episodes via History channels website. However, even with high speed internet and fast computers, I can say this with certainty, History channel's online video player doesn't work.

Due to History channel's lack of artistic sensibilities, I have deiced that I must boycott watching the channel. (This won't be hard for me to do, since I am a CableNever.)

What are your thoughts about Top Gear UK and Top Gear US? Do you despise it like I do or think History should make more episodes?

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Slash makes 2 Appearances on Top Gear

Slash on Top Gear

Top Gear always seems to have well known American celebrities as guests for it's “Star in a Reasonably Priced Car” segment.  (This might be because they realize being on one of the most watched TV shows in the world can really boost your popularity.)  In this part of the show a celebrity guest comes on for an interview with Jeremy Clarkson, and gets to race around the Top Gear test track.  Then you are compared to other celebrity guests track times on the “Power Lap” board.  This is quite an exciting and fun segment and it is always great to see who comes on Top Gear.  Notably American celebrities include Tom Cruise, Cameron Diaz, Mark Wahlberg, Andy Garcia, Matt LeBlanc, and even Slash!

For Season 18 of Top Gear the famous Guns N' Roses guitar player went on the show.  The Slash interview with Jeremy Clarkson was informative, interesting, and as usual funny.  On top of that the guitar player came back for the last episode for Season 18 for an awesome performance of “Jessica” the Top Gear theme song.  Check it out!

 

Top Gear UK vs. Top Gear USA: Which Top Gear is Better?

top gear
Top Gear

If you love cars as much as I do, you inevitably love Top Gear. If you don't know what Top Gear is, I can sum up the the TV show for you like this, “The greatest thing EVER!”

Top Gear shows you what happens when you let loose three crazed automotive journalists and give them an unlimited budget to do what they want with cars. The three hosts Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond get into wacky situations during each episode. They engage in antics such as driving to the North Pole, crossing the English Channel in homemade amphibious vehicles, and trying to prove British Leyland built good cars, just a few situations the three hosts get into during an episode. Top Gear goes boldly where no other TV show goes. It also answers the question of what every man would do if he could remain a kid forever.

Top Gear UK is an immensely popular TV show. I am not the only one who thinks so, as the original British Top Gear has an estimated global audience of 350 million people in 170 different countries every week.  (According to Wikipedia!) 

Americans like to copy good British TV shows. The Office, American Idol, Survivor, Big Brother, etc. were all British TV shows first. Now you can add Top Gear to that list. The History channel now broadcasts an American version of Top Gear with Rutledge Wood, Adam Ferrara, and Tanner Foust. Top Gear USA follows the same format as the original Top Gear, with the three hosts reviewing cars, getting into crazy situations, having celebrities on the show, etc.

The fact that Top Gear USA is still on TV probably makes diehard fans of the original British version groan with pain. The first time I watched an episode of Top Gear USA I didn't like it. This might be because the hosts are not nearly as witty and entertaining and majority of the segments seem to be carbon copies of the original.

Brits, it seems, are just better at making good TV than “Stupid Americans” as Europeans might call us. It makes we wonder if there will be an Americanized version of Downton Abbey. (At least we make great action movies with lots of explosions!)

I may have my own opinions about Top Gear USA. However, I'd like to hear from my readers on which you prefer.

I have compiled these videos for a heads-up challenge, Top Gear UK vs Top Gear USA. Which do you think is better? Watch the videos and decide for yourself. Leave a comment below and share your opinions.

TRAILER 

SKIERS VS. CAR

Top Gear USA – Mitsubishi Evo X by cjrobe0

VIDEO GAME VS. REAL TRACK

Top Gear -NSX @ Laguna Seca

CELEBRITY APPEARANCES

CAR REVIEW

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