‘Cleggover’ Piers Morgan – film star in the making

Piers Morgan on journalists from a pithy interview in the Observer by James Robinson:

I’m having so much fun doing this TV lark [a return to editing newspapers is]  unlikely in the near future. It’s in my veins. It’s in my blood. I love Fleet Street, I love journalists. They are a disgusting bunch of venal reptiles and I love wallowing in their pit.

The interview follows Morgan’s GQ profile of Nick Clegg in which he lured the Liberal Democrat leader into bragging about his ‘no more than 30’ sexual conquests, which has resulted in the nickname ‘Cleggover’ in Westminster.

Morgan also discusses his victory in the US celebrity version of The Apprentice:

‘It’s quite interesting how the British press treated my victory. Half the papers completely ignored this global event [sic]. I thought that was a great accolade.’

The former Mirror editor might have had his tongue in his cheek, but journalists have long had a dislike for colleagues who find fame elsewhere.

Yet there is a long history of screen-struck editors, most famously the legendary Arthur Christiansen. He played the role of Daily Express editor in the 1961 film ‘The Day the Earth Caught Fire’ – and, of course, had done that job for real for 25 years. A Topic magazine report at the time revealed Lord Beaverbrook demanded a private showing in his Fleet Street office. The 82-year-old Express proprietor – in whose ‘glasshouse’ or ‘Black Lubianka’ the film had been shot, is reported to have said: ‘Wonderful. If you had taken up acting instead of editing, you would be another Cary Grant by now.’

Perhaps that’s what Morgan is really after.


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