Jonathan Ross OBE (born 17.11.1960)
Jonathan Ross is an English TV and radio presenter, as well as a respected film critic.
Jonathan Ross: Childhood
Jonathan Ross was born in London, to Martha Ross, an actress and radio presenter. He has three brothers, Paul Ross (also a TV and radio presenter), Miles Ross (a TV producer and actor) and Simon Ross (a TV producer).
Ross attended Norlington School for Boys and then Leyton County High School for Boys, a grammar school. He went on to study Modern European History at the University of London and was made a Fellow of UCL.
Jonathan Ross: Career
Jonathan Ross started his broadcasting career working as a researcher on Channel 4's Loose Talk. His first appearance on TV is believed to be as an extra on a 1981 episode of It Ain't Half Hot, Mum. In 1987, he began work as the presenter of The Last Resort With Jonathan Ross, which was made by his own production company, Channel X. The following year, he made a documentary series entitled The Incredibly Strange Film Show, which focused on cult film heroes such as Jackie Chan and Sam Raimi.
In 1989, Jonathan Ross launched One Hour with Jonathan Ross, which had a comedy segment that helped to launch the careers of Vic Reeves, Bob Mortimer, Paul Whitehouse and Charlie Higson.
1991 was the first year that Jonathan Ross presented the British Comedy Awards on ITV. He continued to do so each year until 2009, following his suspension from the BBC. In 1992, Jonathan Ross hosted an interview with Madonna, about her album Erotica and the promotion of her Sex Book.
Throughout the 1990s, Jonathan Ross appeared on a number of TV programmes, including regularly featuring on They Think It's All Over, with Nick Hancock and Lee Mack, The Big Big Talent Show and ITV's Fantastic Facts.
In 1999, Jonathan Ross took over presenting the BBC's Film Programme, from Barry Norman. Since then Jonathan Ross has become a respected film critic and has even made cameos in a number of films, such as 1997's Spiceworld (featuring The Spice Girls) and 2004's Shrek 2 (starring the voices of Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy and Cameron Diaz), in which he played the voice of Doris.
Jonathan Ross joined BBC Radio 2 as a Saturday morning presenter in 1999, having previously worked on the commercial network service The Superstation, with Chris Evans as his producer. His BBC Radio 2 show became a huge success and many people credit Ross with changing the fortunes of the station, which soon became one of the most popular stations in the UK. In May 2009, the show became pre-recorded, to avoid Ross offending any listeners. This followed an incident on Russell Brand's own radio show, in which he and Ross left a message on the actor Andrew Sachs' answerphone, whilst on air, insulting Sach's granddaughter, with whom Brand is reported to have had a brief affair. Ross was briefly suspended without pay and when his TV and radio shows returned, he made a public apology for his behaviour.
Two years after joining Radio 2, Jonathan Ross started hosting a Friday night chat show on BBC One. Entitled Friday Night With Jonathan Ross, the show featured celebrity guests, as well as live musical performances. Jonathan Ross's friend Ricky Gervais made a number of appearances on the show and a special edition was dedicated to Barbra Streisand when she made a rare live UK TV appearance on the show.
In 2006, the BBC aired a series of shows under the umbrella of 'Jonathan Ross's Asian Invasion', which explored film-making in Japan, Hong Kong and Korea and included his documentary series Japanorama. That same year, Ross became the highest paid TV personality in the UK, with the BBC securing his contract for, reportedly, £6 million per year until 2010. In early 2010, Jonathan Ross announced that he would not be renewing his contract with the BBC, stating that his motivation was not financial. There was soon speculation regarding possible replacements, including Graham Norton for the chat show and Mark Kermode for the Film programmes.
Jonathan Ross: Personal Life
Jonathan Ross has been married to the author and journalist Jane Goldman since 1988. They have three children, Betty Kitten, Harvey Kirby and Honey Kinny. They live together in Hampstead.
Jonathan Ross was awarded an OBE in 2005, in the Queen's Birthday Honours. To celebrate, he played 'God Save the Queen' by The Sex Pistols on his Radio 2 programme.