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Old 07-25-2011, 04:45 PM   #1
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Talking Top Gear host Richard Hammond to get own car show on BBC America.

This might be good.

Top Gear
host Hammond to get own car show in America



By Zach Bowman
Posted Jul 25th 2011 1:30PM

Whether you love Top Gear USA or think it an affront to comedic decency, one thing's certain: the show seems to have helped spawn a new wave of car-themed programming. Adam Carolla's The Car Show has taken to the air as a result of The History Channel's move into fuel-soaked entertainment, and now The BBC is striking back. The Beeb has announced that Richard Hammond will be getting his own show on BBC America soon. Called Hard Drive with Richard Hammond, the program uses a similar format as the UK's World's Toughest Driving Tests.

Hammond will travel around the United States, driving and competing in some of the toughest vehicles our country has to offer. We're sure he'll meet some genuine characters along the way as well.

Hammond isn't the only Top Gear presenter being awarded an American show. James May will also take to BBC America with James May's Man Lab U.S. based on the UK version of his program. Hit the jump for the full press release.

BBC AMERICA ANNOUNCES TWO ORIGINAL UNSCRIPTED SERIES AND ITS FIRST DEVELOPMENT SLATE

- Channels biggest stars to make U.S. series –

New York – BBC AMERICA'S General Manager, Perry Simon, today green lit two original series – Would You Rather with Graham Norton (wt) and Hard Drive with Richard Hammond (wt) – and announced an initial slate of unscripted development, kicking off the channel's first major steps into original U.S. production.

The move comes on the back of BBC AMERICA's highest rated quarter ever. In second quarter 2011, the channel beat all previous records and was up 30% year-on-year in prime and 31% in total day*.

Building on the popularity of the channel's core unscripted program brands – such as Top Gear, Gordon Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares and The Graham Norton Show – the slate aims to expand on the talent and subject-matter BBC AMERICA viewers are responding to.

Simon commented: "Top Gear, Gordon Ramsay and Graham Norton continue to deliver ratings and strong ad revenue. It makes sense to offer our viewers even more of what they love about the channel by developing compatible original programs featuring some of our biggest stars. But this is just the start. Our development team, Richard De Croce, Rachel Smith and Erin Jontow, is already working on the next raft of titles including BBC AMERICA's first original scripted series."

Simon's first original series pick-up on the unscripted side features host and comedian Graham Norton, who has entertained BBC AMERICA audiences for many years with his trademark irreverence and ballsy style of interviewing. Norton's new show is Would You Rather with Graham Norton (wt) (13 x 30), an all new original comedy game show that tests the wits of the best U.S. comics. Shot in New York, it's produced by So Television and executive produced by Graham Norton, Graham Stuart and Jim Biederman. It will premiere later this year as part of BBC AMERICA's recently launched comedy franchise, The Ministry of Laughs.

Top Gear has consistently rated as one of BBC AMERICA's most successful shows. Now Top Gear host Richard Hammond will star in a brand new original series called Hard Drive with Richard Hammond (wt) (6 x 60). Produced by BBC Worldwide Productions and based on the BBC format, World's Toughest Driving Tests, it features Hammond traveling the U.S. and competing with local experts driving some of America's toughest and most extraordinary vehicles. The executive producers for BBC Worldwide Productions are Rob Fox, Elli Hakami and Jane Tranter.

In development, BBC AMERICA has a pilot with another Top Gear presenter, James May. James May's Man Lab U.S. is produced by Plum Pictures and based on May's successful British format of the same name. In the U.S. version, James comes to America and teams up with an American sidekick in order to help his transatlantic brethren rediscover and relearn the skills that define what "being a man" is all about. Executive Producers for Plum Pictures are Will Daws and Stuart Cabb.

AUTO Biography (wt), produced by Reveille, takes a ride down memory lane to track down the lost history of an exceptional vintage car. It's Who Do You Think You Are? for cars as the host traces a vehicle's family tree and meets the previous owners along the way while the vehicle is simultaneously restored and refurbished by our resident garage. The restored car will be reunited with one unsuspecting previous owner. The executive producer for Reveille is Heather Schuster and co-executive producer is Matt O'Brien.

Battlemodo, produced by True Entertainment in association with Gawker Media and its tech site Gizmodo.com is a field-based, hosted hour that takes Gizmodo's recommendation and testing techniques into the real world with epic battles between two cutting edge products that reveal once and for all which is best. Executive producers are Glenda Hersh and Steven Weinstock from True Entertainment and Gaby Darbyshire from Gawker Media.

On the competitive food front, BBC AMERICA follows up on the success of its Gordon Ramsay programming with No Kitchen Required. This single episode format drops four chefs into some of the world's most remote locations and challenges them to create a meal for the local community, putting their own unique spin on native ingredients. Produced by Notional, it features award-winning New York chef Michael Psilakis, who also serves as producer. The on-screen talent includes chefs Madison Cowan, Kayne Raymond and Dominque Crenn. Executive producers for Notional are Chachi Senior, Dave Noll and Cleve Keller.

The channel has also ordered a one hour special/back door pilot of Shock Therapy, produced by BBC Worldwide Productions and adapted from the BBC UK format, Fat & Fatter. The special aims to help addicted young people by pairing them with an extreme version of themselves in order to "shock" them to change their lives and habits for the better. Izzie Pick Ashcroft and Jane Tranter are executive producers.
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Old 07-25-2011, 04:50 PM   #2
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Does this mean he's not presenting top gear uk anymore?
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Old 07-25-2011, 05:14 PM   #3
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Does this mean he's not presenting top gear uk anymore?
No, this is just another gig.
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Old 07-25-2011, 07:31 PM   #4
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Those guys are awesome. Ill watch any show they are on. James may has a show about toys thats pretty funny. Top gear uk is my favorite show and hammond is a known muscle car guy. This show is gonna be great, I cant wait.
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Old 07-25-2011, 07:54 PM   #5
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Thank god. This is how I feel every time I watch top gear usa

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Old 07-25-2011, 08:18 PM   #6
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I still haven't seen in new episodes of top gear uk
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Old 07-26-2011, 01:40 PM   #7
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Am I the only one that likes top gear USA? Love the UK version too.
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Old 07-26-2011, 02:24 PM   #8
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They are both great shows about cars...nonsensical and entertaining...it is just that the U.K. version has personality while the US version has...cars.
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Old 07-26-2011, 04:27 PM   #9
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Am I the only one that likes top gear USA? Love the UK version too.
Yes.
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Old 07-26-2011, 06:44 PM   #10
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BBC America has become the Gordon Ramsey channel lately
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Old 07-26-2011, 07:07 PM   #11
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I thought 'the car show' would be awful(not an Adam Corolla fan), instead its just not bad. It's a bad copy of top gear, but waaaay better than the American version
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Old 07-26-2011, 10:04 PM   #12
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I like top gear usa as well and the new season kicked off sunday and was better than last year. Im glad Rich Hammond is getting his own show he is my fav of the uk top gear hosts.
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