Entertainment & Arts

Chris Evans show cleared over Jeremy Irons swearing

Chris Evans and Jeremy Irons Image copyright PA / Getty
Image caption Chris Evans interviewed Jeremy Irons back in March.

The Chris Evans Breakfast Show on BBC Radio 2 will face no further action from media regulator Ofcom after actor Jeremy Irons swore on air.

Irons had been telling an anecdote about younger actors and used a word that Ofcom said audiences considered "among the most offensive language".

In its ruling, Ofcom noted Chris Evans apologised immediately after the incident, broadcast on 18 March.

Irons also apologised. The BBC had warned him about swearing beforehand.

The watchdog said it now considered the matter resolved.

After Irons used the expletive, Evans responded immediately by saying: "You can't say that, I apologise on your behalf."

Irons also said sorry straight away, adding that he had sworn because he felt "so relaxed" in the studio.

"I am most terribly sorry if anyone is offended, or their children. I'm so embarrassed, I can't talk," he said.

The regulator said it had received one complaint from a listener who said the language was inappropriate and should not have been broadcast at a time when children were likely to be listening.

The Breakfast Show runs from 0630 to 0930 on weekdays.

In response to Ofcom's investigation, the BBC said it accepted the language was inappropriate and apologised for any offence caused.

The corporation said the actor had been "given a full face-to-face briefing on arrival" at the Radio 2 studio, despite a risk assessment concluding that the actor was unlikely to use inappropriate language.

He was told there was potential for children listening and that "he needed to moderate his language and stories accordingly".

The BBC added: "Jeremy Irons, clearly mortified by his mistake, [apologised] without hesitation."

Radio 2 has now reinforced its policy to limit offensive language by sending a warning email to guests' agents and representatives in advance of interviews to remind them of the rules.

The Chris Evans show currently has around 9.7 million listeners in the UK.

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