Matt LeBlanc joins BBC's 'Top Gear'

Thu Feb 4, 2016 6:56am EST
 
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LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's BBC said Matt LeBlanc, former star of 1990s U.S. hit comedy "Friends", will join the new presenting line-up for its popular car show "Top Gear" when it returns in May.

The American actor, who achieved global fame as Joey Tribbiani in the NBC sitcom, will be the first non-British host of the show, the BBC said on Thursday.

"As a car nut and a massive fan of Top Gear, I'm honored and excited to be a part of this iconic show's new chapter," LeBlanc said in a statement. "What a thrill!"

Top Gear, one of the BBC's most successful and profitable shows, was taken off air last year after its star Jeremy Clarkson physically attacked a member of production staff.

Clarkson, along with his two co-presenters, are working on a new motoring show for Amazon.

British radio and TV presenter Chris Evans, who will helm the Top Gear relaunch, said he was thrilled LeBlanc "a lifelong fellow petrolhead" was joining the show.

(Reporting by Paul Sandle; editing by Stephen Addison)

 
Actor Matt LeBlanc poses for a portrait in Los Angeles, California, December 18, 2013.  REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson