Chris Tarrant WASN’T asked to return for Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? revival

What happened to Chris Tarrant on Millionaire? Ex-host replaced by Jeremy Clarkson

Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? is back on ITV tonight with Jeremy Clarkson in the driver’s seat – but what happened to original presenter Chris Tarrant?


Tarrant was the much-loved frontman of the legendary gameshow between 1998 and 2014.

His decision to leave Millionaire after thirty series was one of the reasons it came to an end.

“It’s been a huge part of my life for 15 years and I’ve loved every minute of it, but it is time for me to move on,” he said at the time.

“It’s been the most remarkable journey and I consider myself very fortunate to have been associated with Millionaire from its inception.”

Four years later, ITV has now revived Millionaire for a week of special episodes to mark its 20th anniversary.

Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? 2018 new presenter Jeremy Clarkson
New Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? host Jeremy Clarkson

However, there’s now a new face asking the questions, with The Grand Tour star Jeremy Clarkson taking over as host.


If you’re wondering why Chris isn’t returning, it seems to be because chiefs specifically wanted someone different.

Chris’s agent recently told the Mirror that he WASN’T invited back – although he wouldn’t have been interested anyway.

“Chris thought the programme had run its course,” they said. “He wasn’t approached but if he was, he would have politely turned it down.

“Chris is delighted it’s back and wishes it well.”

A source told the newspaper that “Clarkson was attached to the new show from the start”.

According to Broadcast, it was Wayne Garvie, a boss at format owner Sony Pictures, who had the idea to hire Jeremy.

Millionaire executive producer Kieran Doherty told the trade newspaper: “Jeremy is brilliant at lightening the atmosphere when suspense is building.


“There is a different rapport between him and the contestants than there was with Chris Tarrant.”

Meanwhile, Jeremy himself has admitted he’s nervous about his new job – because viewers don’t always approve of new presenters on TV favourites.

“Taking over the show well-known for one host and then doing another doesn’t always go well,” he told The Sun.

“It is difficult following Chris Tarrant because he was bloody good at it.”


Chris now appears in his documentary series ‘Chris Tarrant: Extreme Railways’, which airs on Channel 5.

Jeremy’s Millionaire continues at 9.00pm until Friday.