Graham Norton shares how Gay Byrne played an “inspirational role” in his career

Graham Norton Pic: ITV

Graham Norton has spoken out about the “inspirational role” the late Gay Byrne played in his career.

Speaking fondly about the former Late Late host, Graham told Bravo TV’s Watch What Happens Live: “This sounds like a joke name, but the big chat show host in Ireland was a man called Gay Byrne.

“He had a show called the Late Late Show and it was my absolute inspiration.

“I grew up watching it every week and like that, the audience was a big part of the show. I just loved him,” he continued.

Graham Norton
Pic: Graham Norton/Hachette

This isn’t the first time Graham has spoken out about his love for Gay and the Late Late, having previously told Seth Meyers in an interview back in April how he always dreamt of being a guest on it.

“As a kid, I always dreamt of being a guest on the show, and it’s only as an adult did I realise it’s much better to be a host.

“You get to be on every week, and the chances of you coming back are higher,” he added.

Of course, Graham is currently flying it in the presenting world, particularly these last few months – from his chat show to hosting Eurovision, to a brand new comedy show for Prime Video.

In fact, earlier this year it was revealed that Graham will be the host of the reboot of the iconic game show, Wheel of Fortune.

In a statement, Graham revealed: “I’m beyond excited to be bringing such an iconic American show to a new British audience.

“My first ever TV job was a game show on ITV so this feels like coming full circle. You might even call it a wheel!”

The show is set to air on ITV1 and ITVX next year.

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