TV

Netflix Says Clarkson, Hammond & May Were Not Worth The Money

We can't imagine that anything could ever puncture the gargantuan ego of Jeremy Clarkson. But these words will surely smart, just a little.

A senior executive at Netflix, who were widely expected to sign up the ex-Top Gear trio of Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond, has said that they didn't get a deal as "it wasn't worth the money".

The presenters recently signed an unexpected, exclusive deal with Amazon Prime, for an undisclosed amount, to make their next series, with rumours previously abounding that the BBC had offered them £1m to come back, while ITV had been the early favourites to sign them up.

Netflix's chief product officer Neil Hunt told Digital Spy that, "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."

He later said in a statement that "There is an audience for everything and it is not up to us to judge if Amazon has paid too much or not."

Meanwhile BT Sport also said that they had turned down the trio, with their managing director Delia Bushell telling The Guardian: "To be honest I didn't consider it. It just wasn't right for us. It's a fantastic franchise, but it made more sense for a global player like Netflix because Top Gear has huge US revenues as well."

Amazon boss Jeff Bezos has previously said that the deal to sign them up was "very, very, very expensive," saying that they are "worth a lot and they know it". Rumours suggest that the total sum for a three-series, 36-episode contract was as much as £160 million - a budget of £4.4m per show, making it one of the most expensive UK TV shows ever made.

Their producer Andy Wilman said that they had signed to Amazon because, "they'll give us the freedom to make the programme we want... there's a budget to produce programmes of the quality we want and this is the future".

So if Clarkson's ego has been hurt, presumably he can nurse it by swimming in his pool of fifty pound notes.

(Image: Rex)