Legendary chat-show host Graham Norton has promised that he will quit his BBC One show within the next eight years. The TV presenter explained at a Times+ event in London that he doesn’t want to still be hosting his popular show when the only guests he can attract are the cast of TOWIE.
“You want to get out when people are still watching your show,” said Norton. “You don’t want it to be when people say, ‘That is still on, that is still a thing?’
“This is the 18th year of me doing a chat show. We’ve been working up to this moment of being on BBC One on that prime Friday night slot, so we’ve always been inching forward in those 18 years.” He added that, “the thing no one wants is the inching backwards, where you’re kind of going, ‘Yes the cast of TOWIE can come on…’ That’s about retiring when you’re on top.”
Speaking with his BBC Radio 2 show co-host Maria McErlane, the 52-year-old comic said that he doesn’t want to keep presenting the show when he hits 60. He said: “I’m not jumping tomorrow, but it is in my head. You want to get out when you can still enjoy your life…Neighbours of mine worked and worked and they went on a trip of a lifetime around the world and they had to be airlifted three times because they were too old to do it.”
He added: “They got stuck on every hike they did. So I don’t want to be them. You want to get out of work when you have still got time to enjoy your life. I do love my job. I might really miss it and then I will feel like an absolute fool. You can’t come back. You could only come back to do I’m a Celebrity or Celebrity Big Brother or really awful things.”
Graham Norton first hosted a chat show back in 1998, with Channel 4’s So Graham Norton. He took over from Jonathan Ross as the BBC’s main chat show host in October 2010.
The Graham Norton Show next airs on Friday (26th June) at 10.35pm on BBC One, with special guests Lewis Hamilton, Rita Ora, Ewan McGregor and Jack Whitehall.