James Corden backs BBC Three move to online-only channel

Comedy actor James Corden, whose hit series Gavin & Stacey was given its big break by BBC3, has backed its move from television to an iPlayer-only channel.

The BBC has earmarked the station for a move to iPlayer, which would save millions to reinvest in other programming.

But James, speaking to The Guardian at Advertising Week Europe, said the youth audience at which the station is aimed was comfortable with viewing programmes on a computer rather than TV.

“I think it should always be at the forefront of what is fresh and exciting, and therefore it should be the first channel to exist online,” he said.

“Providing they still invest and it’s still a commitment to make new and interesting shows, then its audience will find them in the same way you and I enjoy House Of Cards (on Netflix).”

Gavin & Stacey began life on BBC3, but as its success grew it graduated to BBC1. James’s most recent comedy drama The Wrong Mans screened on BBC2.

He said today: “The truth is, I don’t know if Gavin & Stacey would be commissioned by BBC3 today. The channel has changed. It was 2007 that we made that show. It has a much younger outlook.”

The online-only move was proposed last month and is expected to deliver savings of up to £50 million a year.

More than 200,000 people have signed a petition opposing the plan.


Press Association