Following the death of Sir Michael Parkinson at the age of 88, the BBC has announced a change to its pre-planned schedule to remember the broadcasting legend.
The iconic host died after a brief illness, according to a statement shared by his family with the broadcaster, after leaving his imprint in entertainment for seven decades.
On his namesake talk show Parkinson, the journalist was at the forefront of countless famous TV events, from sparring with Muhammad Ali to Victoria Beckham revealing her cheeky ‘golden balls’ nickname for her husband David Beckham.
To pay tribute to Sir Michael, the BBC has announced that it will play Parkinson at 50, a documentary that was initially published in 2021, on Thursday, August 17.
‘In a change to scheduled programming, Parkinson At 50 will air on @BBCOne tonight from 9pm,’ the tweet read.
‘You can also watch the documentary on @BBCiPlayer now, along with some of Sir Michael Parkinson’s classic interviews.’
Parkinson @ 50 honoured the 50th anniversary of Sir Michael’s inaugural episode of Parkinson, which broadcast on June 16, 1971.
While the show was intended to be a brief 10-week filler, it clearly proven to be too popular to terminate abruptly, running for 650 episodes and having over 2,000 guests in all.
Parkinson persisted for a long time despite its “humble beginnings,” becoming a “Saturday night fixture” that won four Bafta Awards and was nominated for eight.
According to the documentary, Sir Michael threw himself into the deep end when he interviewed Rolling Stones guitarist Mick Jagger for the first time.
The BBC took him on, and the rest, as they say, is history.
While many of his interviews went well, some did not, with many recalling his encounter with Meg Ryan, which had a harsh discussion.
Sir Michael apologised to the You’ve Got Mail actress for their 2003 encounter, adding that he wished he hadn’t lost his anger when she delivered quick answers to his queries.
‘I wish I’d dealt with it in a more courteous manner. I was quite obviously angry with her and it’s not my business to be angry towards the guests. I came across as kind of pompous and I could have done better,’ he told Radio Times.
When asked what he would say if they were to ever meet again, he added: ‘I’m sorry. But you must understand that you played a part in it, too. Neither of us were on top form, and we were both discomforted.’
Parkinson at 50 airs tonight at 9pm on BBC One and is available to stream on BBC iPlayer.
Source My Celebrity Life.