Belfast Telegraph

Ross: Negative press made me quit

Jonathan Ross has said the "sheer volume of negative press" he was attracting to the BBC was one of the reasons he quit the corporation.

The presenter's time at the BBC was marked by controversy and he left his BBC One chat show and Radio 2 programme this year.

He said: "To be honest it was the sheer volume of negative press I was receiving and that was being aimed at them via me so I thought it was best if I left."

Jonathan was suspended for 12 weeks without pay in 2008 after he and Russell Brand left obscene messages on Andrew Sach's answerphone which were broadcast on Russell's Radio 2 show.

He also came under fire for his salary, rumoured to be worth £18 million over three years, and also for a controversial interview with David Cameron on his Friday night chat show, where he asked the Tory leader whether he had ever had schoolboy sexual fantasies about former prime minister Margaret Thatcher.

In July it was announced Jonathan had signed a deal to present a chat show for ITV.

He has also indulged his life-long love for comics and signed up to produce a Vampire story for the magazine CLiNT. Jonathan said it was "a gothic, sci-fi, noir page turner".

The first issue of the magazine, which went on sale on Thursday, also features a strip by another controversial funnyman, Frankie Boyle. It is being launched by comic writer Mark Millar, whose Kick-Ass has been developed into a hit movie, scripted by Ross's wife Jane Goldman.

Millar said CLiNT was "The Eagle for the 21st Century".

He said: "I've worked on everything from Spider-Man comics to the Iron Man movie for Marvel in New York, but CLiNT really excites me."

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