Jeremy Clarkson's Professional Future Reportedly in Jeopardy Following Meghan Markle Column

Jeremy Clarkson may lose some work over the column he wrote about Meghan Markle last month. In one of his op-eds for The Sun, Clarkson wrote about his hatred for Markle and fantasized about seeing her "parade naked through the streets of every town in Britain" while people threw excrement at her. According to a report by Deadline, that controversy came just as Clarkson has some TV contracts up for renewal.

Clarkson is best known in the U.K. for hosting TV shows, starting with Top Gear and The Grand Tour but more recently game shows. He reportedly has just one season left in his contract with ITV where he hosts Who Wants to be a Millionaire, which is slated to begin filming next month. After that, his contract will either be renewed or not, and there is substantial pressure to get him off the air.

Scottish Member of Parliament (MP) John Nicolson reportedly published a public message to ITV CEO Carolyn McCall asking her to remove Clarkson from Who Wants to be a Millionaire over his article about Markle. McCall has responded, but she did so privately and it's not clear what she said. However, ITV Director of Television Kevin Lygo did address the controversy late last year.

Lygo reportedly said that he did not plan to fire Clarkson from the show in spite of his comments about Markle. He said that the article was "awful" and "did not represent our values," but denied speculation that Clarkson would be fired. It's not clear if that means his contract will be renewed at the end of this season.

Meanwhile, another aspect of this deal is Clarkson's work with Amazon Prime Video. His shows The Grand Tour and Clarkson's Farm both air on the streaming service, but Variety recently reported that those deals will end soon without being renewed. Amazon is the international home of many BBC and ITV productions, so there are some ways where this influence could have an impact.

For those that don't recall, Clarkson's article about Markle was misogynistic and violent, drawing the dark fantasy described above from a scene in HBO's Game of Thrones. The full passage read: "I hate her. Not like I hate Nicola Sturgeon or Rose West. I hate her on a cellular level. At night, I'm unable to sleep as I lie there, grinding my teeth and dreaming of the day when she is made to parade naked through the streets of every town in Britain while the crowds chant, 'Shame!' and throw lumps of excrement at her."

Clarkson requested that The Sun remove the column from its website and the paper obliged. He also wrote a lengthy apology on Instagram, which Markle and Prince Harry refused to accept. Clarkson has always been one of Markle's most outspoken critics, often targeting her on a personal level as this column did.