A movie critic will co-host Film 2010 — Jonathan Ross's former show — with Claudia Winkleman, it has been announced.
Winkleman (38), who has a weekly arts show on Radio 2, was unveiled in March as Ross's successor on the flagship BBC1 film programme, which returns in the autumn.
Last night the BBC said the new series of Film 2010 will be broadcast live for the first time in its 40-year history and co-hosted by critic and film journalist Danny Leigh. A BBC spokesman said it was always the case that Winkleman would have a co-presenter.
The weekly Wednesday night show will have a new format with “more discussion and debate” and have a longer running time of 40 minutes.
Novelist and journalist Antonia Quirke and Empire movie magazine news editor Chris Hewitt will also be regular contributors.
Leigh has interviewed stars and directors including Johnny Depp, Samantha Morton and Dogville filmmaker Lars von Trier.
He has been published in several newspapers and magazines and has written a weekly online film column for The Guardian since 2007.
He said: “When I was a kid in the dim and distant 1980s becoming ever more obsessed with movies, there were two places I could find out about them — my local fleapit cinema in Brighton, and the BBC's film programme with Barry Norman.
“Having been lucky enough to spend a chunk of the years since writing about film for a living, it entirely boggles my mind to have the chance to co-host the show now.
“I'm really looking forward to working with Claudia and we'll have something for everyone from the casual Wednesday night passer-by to the most well-informed and passionate film fanatic.”
Winkleman, who has covered the Baftas and presented the UK coverage of the Oscars and Golden Globes, said: “I'm completely over the moon about Danny joining the team. He's going to be a fantastic companion discussing all things film — from the latest Hollywood blockbuster to independent art-house cinema. We're even going to discuss the merits of Speed 2 at the weekends — I'm being perfectly serious.”
A BBC spokesman said: “It was always planned we'd have a co-host alongside Claudia. When we announced Claudia's appointment it was clearly said that there would be a change to the show's format and it would feature a range of other people alongside her.
“Claudia is a fantastic presenter and an avid film fan and we're delighted she's on board.”