James Corden might be a Hollywood regular nowadays – with flicks such as Stephen Sondheim adaptation Into the Woods under his belt, and a new presenting slot on the Late Late Show set to start this spring – but he hasn’t forgotten the root of his success.
“I wouldn’t have a career without BBC3,” Corden, who found fame as the writer and star of BBC3’s iconic comedy Gavin & Stacey, tells us. “I would not be sat here now if it wasn’t for the opportunity BBC3 gave Ruth [Jones] and I.”
“If BBC3 was closing down I would be the first person signing a petition to keep it around because I wouldn’t have a career without it. Nor would Matt Lucas and David Walliams, nor would Ruth Jones and nor would lots and lots of great people who have been found and nurtured on that channel.”
It’s a reminder of the careers the channel, which bought us shows such as Little Britain, Being Human, Him & Her, Torchwood and The Mighty Boosh, kickstarted. And a bittersweet one, with the future of BBC3 currently up for debate; the public are able to have their say on its proposed closure and move online from today.
While Corden is a staunch supporter of the Beeb’s youth orientated channel, he’s not opposed to a shift onto the web as long as it has enough money to keep supporting new talent.
“That’s where [TV is] going anyway,” Corden tells us. “It’s just a fact now that young people are not consuming television in a scheduled way. That’s the nature of where TV is at now so I think it’ll be a good and positive move.”
“The point is not where it exists. The budget that it has, that’s what it comes down to. If they stay committed to investing in new writers, new performers, new talents and new documentary makers then it will thrive and it will be brilliant.”
“BBC3 as a channel should always, always be at the forefront of what is new and young and fresh and exciting,” Corden adds. “If it’s not, there’s no point having it.”