Although it was previously reported that the former Top Gear hosts were heading to Netflix, they, along with the show’s longtime producer Andy Wilman, announced they have signed a three-season global TV deal with Amazon Instant Video. They’ll be making a new car show that’s said to rival Top Gear, and with the first season going into production fairly soon, it will be available for Amazon Prime members to stream some time in 2016.
“I feel like I’ve climbed out of a bi-plane and into a spaceship,” Clarkson said about the deal, showing his usual dry humor. May, on the other hand, called it “ironic” that the three of them are part of the “new age of smart TV.”
Clarkson was let go from Top Gear back in March, when the BBC decided not to renew his contract after he attacked a Top Gear producer. Although the BBC was keen on keeping Hammond and May as hosts, they stood in solidarity and stated that they and Clarkson were a package deal. They confirmed a month later that they wouldn’t be returning to Top Gear either.
Meanwhile, Top Gear will live on with BBC Radio host Chris Evans signing a three-year deal as the new host.
The deal with Clarkson, Hammond, and May was due in part to fans’ persistence to, in a way, get the band back together.
“Customers told us they wanted to see the team back on screen, and we are excited to make that happen,” James Marine, Vice President of Amazon Prime Video EU, said in a statement. “Millions of Prime members are already enjoying our ground-breaking original shows. We can’t wait to see what Jeremy, Richard, James and the team will create in what is sure to be one of the most globally anticipated shows of 2016.”
Hammond and May are thrilled as well, both with their wits about them.
I've got a job I've got a job I've got a job.
Haircut, clean jeans and practice driving again. Forrrrwaaaaaaaard!!
— Richard Hammond (@RichardHammond) July 30, 2015
— James May (@MrJamesMay) July 30, 2015
The only disappointing thing in all this? Clarkson may not have gotten his first job choice at Amazon after all.
[email protected] now saying I can't be their chief drone pilot. Apparently they want us to make a car show.
— Jeremy Clarkson (@JeremyClarkson) July 30, 2015
Screengrab via BBC/YouTube