30/10/2008

Brand Quits Radio 2 As Prank Call Row Continues

Russell Brand has resigned from his Radio 2 job as a row continues over prank calls made to 'Fawlty Towers' actor Andrew Sachs on the show.

Jonathan Ross, who was a guest on Brand's show and was involved in the incident, remains suspended, and both his BBC One show 'Friday Night with Jonathan Ross' and his Saturday morning show on Radio 2 have been pulled.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, Brand said that he accepted "complete responsibility" for the incident and said: "As I only do the radio show to make people laugh I've decided that, given the subsequent coverage, I will stop doing the show."

Ross also issued a statement in which he said he was "deeply sorry" and regretted the "upset and distress" that his "juvenile and thoughtless remarks".

BBC Director-General Mark Thompson is due to meet with the broadcaster's governing body to discuss the incident.

The row erupted following the broadcast of Brand's show on Radio 2 on October 18, on which Ross was a guest.

The pair made a series of prank phone calls to Sachs, 78, who played Spanish waiter Manuel on 'Fawlty Towers'. He had been scheduled to give an interview to the show, but had to pull out due to unforeseen circumstances.

During the phone calls, Ross claimed that Brand slept with Sachs' granddaughter, Georgina Baillie, 23.

The BBC has now received 27,000 complaints about the incident.

(KMcA)


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