ITV have confirmed that Jeremy Clarkson will continue as the ‘Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?’ host “at the moment”.
Clarkson’s latest column for The Sun was released on Sunday where he said he “hated Meghan Markle on a cellular level” and that he was “dreaming of the day when she is made to parade naked through the streets of every town in Britain while crowds chant, ‘Shame!’ and throw lumps of excrement at her”. The Grand Tour host received an incredible amount of backlash from other celebrities and the public with many calling for him to lose his job with ITV.
Managing director of ITV Studios, Kevin Lygo, has now commented on the situation. He said:
“I would say what he writes in a newspaper column… We have no control over what he says.
“We hire him as a consummate broadcaster of the most famous quiz on television, Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?
“So it’s not quite in our wheelhouse but I don’t know what he was thinking when he wrote that. It was awful.”
When quizzed on whether they will keep the former Top Gear host on as a presenter, Lygo explained:
“Yes, at the moment we are.”
Lygo also went on to confirm that Clarkson does not represent ITV’s values in this instance.
Clarkson has requested for the column to be taken down by The Sun, which they have done, and he has acknowledged the upset that he has caused on Twitter. However, he is also receiving criticism for this as many have picked up on the fact he hasn’t actually apologised. He wrote:
“Oh dear. I’ve rather put my foot in it. In a column I wrote about Meghan, I made a clumsy reference to a scene in Game of Thrones and this has gone down badly with a great many people. I’m horrified to have caused so much hurt and I shall be more careful in future,”
On top of the backlash from the public, MPs also wrote a letter to Victoria Newton, editor for The Sun, which read:
“We are horrified at the recent article by Jeremy Clarkson in your publication. As parliamentarians of every persuasion, we condemn in the strongest terms the violent misogynistic language against the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle.
“This sort of language has no place in our country, and it is unacceptable that it was allowed to be published in a mainstream newspaper. Ms Markle has faced multiple credible threats to her life, requiring the intervention of the Metropolitan Police.
“Hateful articles like the one written by Clarkson do not exist in a vacuum, and directly contribute to this unacceptable climate of hatred and violence.”