“As a car nut and a massive fan of Top Gear, I’m honoured," the 'Friends' and 'Extras' star said
Former Friends actor Matt LeBlanc has been revealed as one of the new presenters on the BBC’s long-running motoring show, Top Gear. The actor, who rose to fame playing the Italian-American lothario Joey Tribbiani on the smash-hit NBC sitcom, will now be racing various vehicles through cities and get up to increasingly outlandish antics on the BBC Two show with British TV personality Chris Evans.
LeBlanc has already been a guest on the show, appearing twice during the reign of Jeremy Clarkson, where he managed to top the magnetic list of speedy runs around the Top Gear track as a ‘Star in a Reasonably-Price Car’.
The actor also previously presented a recent standalone spin-off Top Gear: The Races, where he steered viewers through a series of some of the show’s most iconic moments from its 22-series history.
A BBC spokesperson said that LeBlanc “joins production immediately,” also revealing that another presenter “will be confirmed shortly.” Personalities previously linked to the role include former F1 driver David Coulthard and Bake Off presenter Sue Perkins.
“Matt’s a lifelong fellow petrolhead and I’m thrilled he’s joining Top Gear,” Chris Evans said.
“Acting out our craziest car notions on screen is a dream job and I know we’ll both be debating some epic road trip ideas. We can’t wait to share what we’ve been up to on screen later this year.”
Matt LeBlanc said: “As a car nut and a massive fan of Top Gear, I’m honoured and excited to be a part of this iconic show’s new chapter. What a thrill!”
Alan Tyler, the BBC’s Acting Controller for Entertainment Commissioning, said: “Matt is a class act and a brilliant signing for Top Gear. He is a self-confessed car fanatic with a passion for the programme. I’m really looking forward to watching Chris and Matt bring the all new show to our audiences.”
The three previous presenters, Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond, all left the show when Clarkson was sacked after a physical altercation with the show’s producer, Oisín Tymon. The trio signed on to Amazon to produce their own motoring show, with the Internet retailer reportedly paying €210m for 36 episodes over three years.