BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.

24 September 2014

BBC Homepage

Contact Us

Clive Anderson

Clive Anderson

Clive Anderson has not only enjoyed considerable success as a comedy writer and television presenter, but is also a former practising barrister.

The two careers might seem starkly different on the surface, but there's no doubt both have been served well by his quick and acerbic wit.

After studying at Harrow and then Cambridge, where he became president of the prestigious Footlights, Anderson was called to the Bar in 1976 and specialised in criminal law.

Soon, though, he cut his teeth in comedy by co-writing with Rory McGrath the star-studded 1978 radio pantomime Black Cinderella Two Goes East.

Early on Anderson was more a writer than performer, contributing to shows including Not the Nine O’Clock News and Alas Smith and Jones.

But by the late 80s he gained fame as host of long-running improvisation show Whose Line Is It Anyway? before fronting a succession of chat shows.

With the advantage of his legal background, Anderson proved a sharp and engaging interviewer and rarely let guests off the hook (in one famous incident a typically caustic remark provoked the Bee Gees to walk out on him).

More recently he has made regular appearances on panel shows including Have I Got News For You? and QI, which have provided new outlets for his sharp comic brain to shine.

Appearances by Clive Anderson
Start YearAliasProgramme BrandCountry

As a Writer

Alas Smith And Jones 1982
Not The Nine O'clock News 1979

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external websites.



About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy