In the showbiz scoop of the year, Rhubarb Grumble can exclusively reveal that arch-rivals Jeremy Clarkson and Piers Morgan have been lined up to co-present a new big-budget programme combining motoring and travel.
Entitled ‘Clarkson Drives a Morgan’ the show will see the Top Gear presenter take the wheel alongside his nemesis in a roadtrip around the world, visiting some of the most beautiful - and dangerous – places across the globe.
And, yes, the vehicle chosen for the journey is a Morgan: the new six-cylinder Roadster 3.7 to be precise.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, a programme insider said: “We envisage a show that’s a cross between a series of Top Gear Specials and The Trip (the hit sitcom starring Rob Brydon and Steve Coogan) but it will be on steroids because these two really f***ing hate each other.
“When we pitched the idea to Jeremy he laughed and told us to f*** off but when we told him Piers was on board he agreed, just so it wouldn’t look like he’d chickened out. The truth is, we got Piers to agree by saying Jeremy was up for it and he had mocked Piers, saying he would chicken out.
“So we kind of tricked them both into signing up by playing on their huge egos and unbelievably childish rivalry. Now they’ve both contractually bound to deliver. It’s literally unbelievable!
He added: “We’re expecting fireworks when we finally bring them together. Actually, we’re expecting military-grade explosives. It will be absolutely unmissable, appointment TV.”
|A TV match made in Hell?|
Because Clarkson and Morgan are both globally recognised brands due to the success of Top Gear and Piers’s CNN profile, producers are expecting the show to be snapped up by networks in multiple territories. Shooting is pencilled in for 2016.
Clarkson is expected to announce soon that the next series of Top Gear will be his last. The controversial presenter has been under fire in the media for his apparent use of the N-word in out-takes from the show which went viral.
He apologised and revealed in a newspaper article that the BBC had given him his last warning. It seems he has jumped before the inevitable push.
As for Morgan, the former tabloid editor has been dumped from his CNN show ‘Piers Morgan Tonight’ after lacklustre ratings.
Naturally, Clarkson - who once broke a finger punching Morgan at the British Press Awards – welcomed this event as manna from heaven but it didn’t stop him writing an excoriating column in which he claimed Morgan was axed because 'everyone hates him'.
When asked about the new show, a source close to Clarkson said: “This is fantasy. Jeremy would rather join The Green Party than spend even five minutes in a car with Morgan.
“Actually, that’s not true. He’d happily drive him but only if Piers was bound and gagged in the boot and Jeremy could jump out before the car plunged into a deep ravine.”
A friend of Morgan said: “Piers has bigger issues on his mind than rescuing Jeremy Clarkson from himself.
"But when the inevitable happens, and Clarkson’s career is ended by his own stupidity, Piers will be happy to give him a job. He understands Jeremy makes a great cup of tea.”
Despite the denials, ‘Clarkson drives a Morgan’ is an idea that could net the two men millions. Whether they would survive long enough to spend it though is more difficult to say.