Yesterday, Jalopnik published a leaked farewell email from Andy Wilman to staff, which many people took as him resigning. Today he clarified it wasn’t a resignation email nor meant for public consumption.
Here’s the statement:
Yesterday Top Gear’s executive producer Andy Wilman sent an email to everyone who has worked on Top Gear in the last 13 years, thanking them for their contributions to the show.
This email was subsequently leaked to the press, and taken as confirmation that Andy had resigned from Top Gear. This is his response:
“The email I wrote yesterday was not a resignation statement, and nor was it meant for public consumption.
“It was a private note of thanks to 113 people who have worked on the show over the years, but clearly one of those 113 is a bit of a tit, because they shared it with a website.
“I don’t get this modern obsession with sharing, linking, forwarding, re tweeting; whatever happened to a private moment? And if I were to resign, I wouldn’t do it publicly, I’d do it old school by handing in my, er, notice, to someone upstairs in HR.
“I work behind the camera and I wouldn’t presume for one moment to think people are interested in what I do. Now, everyone back to work.”
Given that the original email has the subject “Au revoir” and he said “For those of you who still rely on it for work, don’t worry, because the BBC will make sure the show continues,” I think it’s safe to say he’s largely splitting hairs here. While we never said he resigned, we did imply he was leaving the BBC (which I think is true).
He may have not technically resigned from the BBC, nor may he have to (he could just not renew his contract), but no one expects he’ll be sticking around for that much longer as many people in the industry have guessed that he’ll be off to Netflix or somewhere else with his longtime partner Jeremy Clarkson.
That all being said, for the sake of the show and for his relationship with the BBC, I don’t blame Wilman for making sure no one thinks he dropped an email and peaced out.