The Graham Norton Show. Graham Norton. Copyright: So Television
The Graham Norton Show

The Graham Norton Show

  • TV chat show
  • BBC One / BBC Two
  • 2007 - 2022
  • 453 episodes (29 series)

Comic chat show presented by Graham Norton. The biggest names in showbiz join the host on his sofa.

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Series 16, Episode 1 - Denzel Washington, Peter Capaldi, Gemma Arterton, George Ezra

Denzel Washington talks about action roles at 60; Peter Capaldi says Doctor Who is an amazing wonderful gift; Gemma Arterton demonstrate her singing ability; and George Ezra performs live in the studio.

Preview clips

Further details

Denzel Washington, talking about his new movie The Equalizer, which he describes as 'Old school Hitchcock', and asked whether more are planned, says, "We've got to get this one out first. They've talked about it, but it's up to the people, they decide. The last part of movie is always the audience."

Talking more about the film and his character, both loosely based on the original Edward Woodward TV series, Denzel says, "There is a lot of implied violence but there are lighter moments, I've got a little 'Gladys Knight and the Pips' going on. I stood in front of YouTube and learnt the moves", before demonstrating his Midnight Train To Georgia routine.

Asked about his upcoming 60th birthday, he says, "My birthday is December 28th, but I'm celebrating it every day."

Talking about the physicality of his action roles at his age, and asked if they are taking their toll, he says, "I've boxed for 20 years and I try to stay fit," adding, "I don't worry about getting hurt, I've read the script and know I win the fight!" Adding, "The stunt men make it safe, they take care of me."

Peter Capaldi, asked if he is enjoying being Doctor Who, enthuses, "It's an amazing, wonderful gift and a privilege. I love being Doctor Who. I wake up in the morning and I'm Doctor Who, and when I go out to the shops and buy a pint of milk, I'm Doctor Who, everywhere I go I am The Doctor and everyone smiles at me - they are pleased to see Doctor Who, who's far more exciting than I am!"

Talking more about people's reaction, and explaining the concept of the show to Denzel, he tells a story about an encounter in a DIY shop, "The day after I was announced as The Doctor, I went to buy a light bulb in an old hardware store - like the one in the 'Four Candles' sketch - and a bloke came out from behind the counter with a sink plunger stuck to his head!"

Asked whether, following his rather 'sweary' role as Malcolm Tucker in The Thick Of It, he has to be really careful when meeting people in the street now, he says, "Fans of the show would come up to me and say, 'swear at me, please, please swear at me,' so I would have to stand in the street and abuse them with the worst possible language."

Acknowledging he is different with fans of The Doctor, he adds, "I am squeaky clean," adding, jokingly, "I can of course swear on my own time obviously, but I haven't sworn for about two years now!"

Talking about his unconventional early career, he says, "It was all rather confusing. I was rejected from drama school and ended up in a movie with Burt Lancaster, then I won an Oscar for my short film and I thought, 'this is it' and a year later I was directing a dog commercial!"

Gemma Arterton, asked if she would like to be in Doctor Who, says "I don't know, I've never been asked. But if I did it, I'd like to be an alien or something and not the typical kind of Doctor Who assistant."

Asked about her new musical role in the stage version of Made in Dagenham, she says "Everything about it is just wonderful. I always sang and always wanted to go in a musical but the right thing hadn't come along. I wanted to do something original and never done before. It's such a big commitment for me that it had to be the right thing. I've sung in films before but this is the first time in public." Gemma delights the audience with spontaneous rendition of a song from the show.

Revealing she is incredibly superstitious, Gemma says, "A psychic once told me she saw me singing on screen. She was almost there. And I often find proper white feathers in bizarre places like a pocket or they fly past me, they are a good omen."

George Ezra performs Blame It On Me live in the studio, before joining Graham for a chat.

Talking about his rapid rise to success, says, "This time last year it was a rail card and a guitar." Asked about taking his sister on tour with him, he says, "She's there to make sure I don't have too good a time! She's there to keep me in line."


This episode began 6 minutes later than its scheduled 22:35 timeslot, due to extended news coverage.

This episode was dedicated to Joan Rivers, 1933 - 2014.

Broadcast details

Friday 26th September 2014
50 minutes


Show past repeats

Date Time Channel
Monday 29th September 2014 11:15pm BBC1
Monday 29th September 2014 11:55pm BBC1 Wales

Cast & crew

Graham Norton Host / Presenter
Guest cast
Denzel Washington Guest
Gemma Arterton Guest
Peter Capaldi Guest
George Ezra Guest
Writing team
Rob Colley Writer
Dan Gaster Writer
Production team
Steve Smith Director
Jon Magnusson Series Producer
Rina Dayalji Producer
Pete Snell Producer
Graham Stuart Executive Producer
Perry Widdowson Editor
Chris Webster Production Designer
Jonathan Whitehead (as Trellis) Composer


Peter Capaldi on keeping Doctor Who a secret

Peter Capaldi chats about having to keep being cast as the Twelfth Doctor a secret.

Featuring: Graham Norton & Peter Capaldi.

Denzel Washington busts a move

Denzel Washington shows some moves to Midnight Train to Georgia.

Featuring: Graham Norton & Denzel Washington.

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