Jeremy Clarkson Drives His Price Up to $15 Million A Year

Jeremy Clarkson punched a guy and lost his job for it. That singular event unfolded and landed him in more money than Clarkson ever made on BBC Two.

Amazon is making a play to earn more of Netflix’s subscribers for its Prime Instant Video Service, using Jeremy Clarkson’s new car show, which he will be hosting with James May and Richard Hammond. It appears that Amazon is prepared to spend a lot of money to do it, as well. According to RT, in addition to the annual salary they are paying Jeremy Clarkson, the show he will be hosting will have a budget of $7 million per episode, and the total cost for the 36 episodes of the show that Amazon has bought totals at $250 million per episode.

Jeremy Clarkson’s previous show, Top Gear, had a budget of only $750,000 per episode when it began, and by the time Jeremy was fired, the budget had climbed to the price of $1.5 million. While the payout that Jeremy Clarkson will be receiving has been revealed, there is no word yet on how much his co-hosts will be earning. However, Clarkson will be producing the new show with his former Top Gear producer, Andy Williams, who will be earning $11 million annually.

BBC Two controller Kim Shillinglaw is looking to the future of Top Gear, sans Jeremy Clarkson, as RTE Ten reports. At the Edinburgh International TV Festival, she revealed her excitement about the new star of Top Gear and replacement for Jeremy Clarkson, Chris Evans, saying she is “so excited and of course terrified.”

“I really can’t think of a person that better combines two things I think are really central to Top Gear: one is an absolute genuine passion for cars, but also being incredibly spontaneous, incredibly surprising. You don’t quite know what’s going to happen next. Watching someone who has that is always fantastic telly.”

Evans of course has some rather large shoes to fill. Under Jeremy Clarkson, Top Gear earned a place in the Guinness Book of World Records as the most watched factual television program in the world. According to NBR, 350 million people per week would tune in to watch Top Gear with Clarkson and his co-hosts running the show. Top Gear generated $225 million for BBC worldwide across multiple media platforms including its website, a magazine and live shows that went on world tour.

There are no guarantees in new business ventures, and there are outlets that claim that Jeremy Clarkson’s star is fading. Of course, there are those who will stay loyal to the Top Gear brand without Clarkson, but Amazon obviously feels there will be plenty of people signing on to witness Jeremy’s antics.

With this deal, Jeremy Clarkson will become the highest paid TV host in Britain.

[Image by Carrie Davenport / Getty Images]