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Top Gear has had more drama than perhaps any other car-based show on television, and as the BBC continues to push the franchise along following the controversial firings of former hosts Jeremy Clarkson & Co., the corporation has announced it will be rebooting a former spinoff series as well. BBC America will be bringing back a U.S. version of the show titledTop Gear America, with the stellar actor William Fichtner joining the series as a host.
William Fichtner will be joined by champion drag racer Antron Brown and British automotive journalist Tom "Wookie" Ford for the updated spinoff Top Gear America. Together, the three will feature this country's greatest modern supercars and timeless classics through eight hour-long episodes for its initial season on BBC America. While most know William Fichtner as an actor in shows like Prison Break or films like The Dark Knight, some might know he's a big car guy as well. Fichtner not only loves cars, but he also races competitively and even managed to beat fellow actor and driving pro Frankie Muniz, as well as others, at a celebrity race 2011. That beats being in Ninja Turtles, right?
Those in the racing community should know the name Antron Brown fairly well. Brown is a 3-time drag racing champion of the NHRA Top Fuel circuit, as well as the first African American champion of the sport. He'll obviously have lots to bring to the spinoff's conversation where high-stakes competition is concerned.
As for Tom "Wookie" Ford, he's served as an associate editor for Top Gear magazine and former editor of Car magazine. Ford joins Top Gear America as a non-American, but considering the series' roots in the U.K., we can let it slide. He's got more than enough brainpower to match the horsepower.
The announced reboot of Top Gear America comes around 9 months after the cancellation of the first run of the series, was was simply called Top Gear. The first series lasted 6 seasons on History and was headlined by comedian and actor Adam Ferrara. It seems kind of odd that BBC is so eager to bring the series back so quickly after the cancellation, but maybe everyone there figured canceling was better than firing and replacing presenters as was done with the flagship series.
This Top Gear America spinoff will likely be less messy than the BBC's own Top Gear reboot. While the network continues to air Top Gear with new host Matt LeBlanc (but no longer last season's Chris Evans), former hosts Jeremy Clarkson, James May, Richard Hammond went elsewhere after the controversial shake-up. The three were eventually scooped up by Amazon and now host their own Top Gear-esque show, The Grand Tour. Maybe Adam Ferrara and his former Top Gear crew will appear on The Grand Tour now?
No release date yet for Top Gear America, but Season 24 of Top Gear airs on Sundays at 8 p.m. ET on BBC America. Hopefully, William Fichtner and crew will celebrate the same success as all the hosts did before March 2015 got here. I can't think of any other car shows coming out soon off the top of my head, but our midseason premiere guide and Summer tv premiere schedule would know better than me, so be sure to head over there to see.