Graham Norton and his giggleworthy interviews are back for a new season on BBC Brit soon.
Season 21 premieres on Tuesday, 18 April at 21h00 and features a line-up of well known, super-famous famous people and some you may never have heard of.
It never matters with Graham because everyone is interesting when they speak to him even if you have no clue who they are.
Headliners for the premiere episode are: Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine who are starring together in the movie Going in Style, comedians Jack Whitehall and Gemma Whelan, who are in a new TV comedy Decline, and boyband-turned-manband Take That are still going 25 years later and are the musical performances for the night.
Snippets of what to expect:
Michael, revealing that his own pronunciation of his name once landed him in hot water, says, “I was at a party in the Philippines and the hostess was looking at me rather nastily and finally she beckoned me over and said, ‘Are you a drug dealer? When I said, ‘No, why do you ask?’ she said, ‘Why is everyone calling you My Cocaine?’ You know that story is true because you couldn’t make it up.”
Morgan, talking about his own distinctive voice says, “I am constantly asked to do answering machine recordings but I won’t do any more unless I can charge for it!” Asked whose voice is on his own answering machine, he says, “The man that installed the equipment. If you don’t know me and you get that voice you’re going to hang up!”
Talking about their new movie Going in Style, in which they star as ageing criminals, and asked if they might consider retiring, Michael says, “Actors don’t retire, the movie retires them. Some people get retired after their first movie.” Agreeing, Morgan adds, “Very few of us retire.”
Asked about playing roles older than his real years, Morgan says, “I’ve been playing ‘old’ for a long time.” Adding, “I had a drama teacher once that told me that no one old has un-broken movements and that I should imagine that my testicles were glass balls – that’s how I go about – I just walk very carefully!”
Michael, talking about the upcoming Hatton Garden Robbery movie, in which he plays one of the gang, says, “In that one I play young – a 73 year old. I’ll have lots of make up for that!”
Talking about Alfie
and the huge international success it had, Michael says, “It went everywhere except France and when I asked a French friend why that was, he said, ‘Because we cannot imagine an Englishman could make love to 10 women.’ I said, “Well actually it was 11 and two of those were French!”
Morgan, talking about Shawshank Redemption and the reasons it is everyone’s favourite film despite being a box-office flop, he says, “It tanked and the simple reason is that the only real marketing a movie gets is word of mouth. You can promote it all you want but if the first few audiences come back and can’t say the title of the film – people would say, ‘Shanksham’ or ‘Shimshock’ and one woman said to me, ‘I saw you in the Hudsucker Reduction! Michael interjects, “That’s why Alfie did so well!”
Jack and Gemma join Graham for a chat.
Jack, revealing a rather strange encounter, says, “It was the weirdest situation. I was in a Thailand hotel restaurant with my mum and dad and Steven Seagal was there. His manager came over and said, “We saw you on the Graham Norton Show and you were very funny. Would you like to join us for lunch?’ So we had lunch with them and it was like a weird Come Dine With Me
– at one point Steven was telling my mother how she could kill an attacker with a Samurai sword!”
Talking about starring in Decline and Fall, Jack says, “I was bragging about my sex scene with Eva Longoria and then it was cut. I was very upset but it wasn’t the best sex scene. I was wearing pyjamas and double sided tape had been used on them and as Eva ripped my top off it pulled out my chest hair and I was literally in tears.”
Michael interjects advising Jack to stop doing nude scenes, “An actor controls the audience and the moment you take your clothes off you have lost them. I have never done nudity and I never would.”
Gemma, talking about the series, says, “I felt like a competition winner being in it. It was a fantastic thing to be part of – it was such a hoot.”
Take That perform an exclusive version of Wonderland live in the studio before Gary, Howard and Mark join Graham for a chat.
Talking about their upcoming tour and the spectacle they produce, Gary says, “It is the highlight of our year.” Howard adds, “I can guarantee that even someone that doesn’t like our music would love the tour. Interjecting, Mark says, “I think the scale of the show comes from a place of insecurity – having so much stuff around us makes us look good!”
Asked about the upcoming musical The Band, Gary says, “We are very proud of the show and the band themselves – we feel maternal towards them.” Mark adds, “Who’d have thought we would be here doing this 25 years on.”