A leading British talk-show host, Jonathan Ross, announced today (Thursday) that he will be leaving the BBC when his contract expires in July. He is regarded as one of the highest-paid broadcasters in Britain, earning, according to some reports, well over $10 million a year. Although the financially troubled BBC has indicated that it intends to cut the fees it pays top talent, Ross, a BBC star for some 13 years, insisted in a statement that money played no part in his decision to leave. "I signed my current contract with the BBC having turned down more lucrative offers from other channels because it was where I wanted to be and -- as I have said before -- would happily have stayed there for any fee they cared to offer, but there were other considerations," Ross said in his statement, without disclosing what his "other considerations" were. Last year the BBC suspended him for three months for participating in a radio stunt with comedian Russell Brand in which they left crude messages on actor Andrew Sachs's answering machine.

07/01/2010