Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Amazon denies overpaying for Clarkson, Hammond & May

clarksonhammondmay.jpg

Forget Leicester versus Spurs, or Barcelona and Real Madrid - this is the big clash of the titans in the world of television this year.

With Chris Evans' revamped Top Gear due to air in May, the old trio of Clarkson, Hammond and May will take to the screens of Amazon Prime subscribers later in the year with their has-it-still-not-got-a-bloody-name-as-yet-untitled motoring show for a winner-takes-all showdown to see who will be king of the road.

However, with all eyes focused on whether Evans will hold on to viewers, few people have stopped to consider whether the Clarkson, Hammond and May show will be a success.

Neil Hunt, a senior executive at Netflix, has been one of the only voices critical of the Amazon deal, saying in September, “We have past episodes of Top Gear, so we have a pretty good gauge of what audiences like. Our buying decisions tend to be somewhat data-driven. We have a lot of data to get the deals we want. Clearly it wasn’t worth the money to make the deal.” The streaming giant later issued an addendum to these remarks, saying “There is an audience for everything and it is not up to us to judge if Amazon has paid too much or not.”

Now Amazon has come out swinging, saying that the rumoured $160m contract was a "safe bet".

Jay Marine, Amazon's European Prime Video boss told The Guardian: "This is on the safer side of bets I’ve made. We look at everything when we consider a new show and deal. The reality is these three guys have made a great show for a long time. They have a passionate following and yeah, sometimes they are controversial. But I can tell you people are excited to see them back on air."

He continued: "Have we paid a lot of money? For sure. But these guys are worth a lot of money. It’s very rare that you find something like this where a team come along who already have a built-in worldwide audience that I would argue is unique. This was one of the most sought-after and highly competitive situations we’ve seen in terms of signing them. We looked at the data every which way and we love this deal."

The idea is, clearly, for this show to be a marquee signing which alone would encourage people to sign up for Amazon Prime - even if the trio offend a few people along the way.

"We do view it as a game-changer," he says. "It is the exact type of show with a passionate audience that people will subscribe for."

Marine explained that they have "no interest" in allowing the show to go out on a terrestrial channel at a later date, saying “There has been sub-licensing interest from others, it is a very sought-after show. But we have no interest in doing that. This is an exclusive show for Amazon Prime members.” 

He also revealed that they haven't decided on whether to go with a traditional week-by-week release, or to throw everything online at once.

“We usually binge-release. But we are open to experimenting on that. There is no doubt people have responded well to bingeing. But there is also something nice about a weekly cadence where people are all on the same episode and there is social discussion about what happened last night. Stay tuned, we haven’t made that decision.”

[via Guardian]

Related

1.jpg

James May confirms when we’re getting Amazon Prime’s Top Gear

clarkson.PNG

LEAKED: First footage of Clarkson, Hammond & May's new show

top-gear-still.PNG

Top Gear has just released a surprisingly exciting first trailer

Comments

More

'Game of Thrones' fans will definitely enjoy this IKEA toilet display

Not sure that the 'Porcelain Throne' has quite the same ring to it, though

by Matt Tate
28 Mar 2017

The 'Fresh Prince' cast all hung out yesterday, but still no reboot

The main cast of the popular sitcom - minus the sadly deceased James Avery - have resurfaced on Alfonso Ribeiro's Instagram

by Tom Mendelsohn
28 Mar 2017

'Moonlight' director Barry Jenkins is making a TV series for Amazon

It's an adaptation of award-winning novel 'The Underground Railroad'

by Tom Mendelsohn
28 Mar 2017

Bryan Cranston visits 'Better Call Saul' set in new video

The gang got back together for a short video

by Matt Tate
28 Mar 2017

'Westworld' showrunners clear up big question about season one

They've also had to change the season two plot because people on Reddit guessed it

by Alex Finnis
27 Mar 2017

Piers Morgan is wearing a Tottenham shirt for Comic Relief

No Piers on Twitter - relish this day

by Matt Tate
24 Mar 2017

Stephen Hawking holds auditions for a new voice in hilarious clip

The legendary scientist's teamed up with Comic Relief

by Dave Fawbert
24 Mar 2017

'Malcolm in the Middle' is the greatest show in the history of TV

Nothing will ever top it

by Gary Ogden
23 Mar 2017

Contestants complete year in Highlands to discover show was cancelled

They're been living in the wilderness for a year for nothing

by Dave Fawbert
23 Mar 2017

Wheel of Fortune contestant scuppered by his own horny mind

Oh, mate...

by Matt Tate
22 Mar 2017