TV & Film
Viewers praise Paddy and Christine McGuinness after ‘eye-opening’ autism documentary
Paddy and Christine used their documentary to raise awareness of autism and to break down the stigma
Viewers were left in tears last night following Paddy and Christine McGuinness’ debut BBC One documentary, Our Family and Autism.
Airing on Wednesday night at 9pm, the emotional documentary gave a rare insight into the home life of the McGuinness’, who are parents of three autistic children – twins Leo and Penelope, eight, and five-year-old Felicity.
For the first time, the Bolton-bornTop Gear host opened up about spiralling into depression following his children’s autism diagnosis, wherein he admitted ‘throwing myself into my work’ as he struggled to cope and come to terms with the news.
He said: “I got that down that I had to see a therapist and he diagnosed me with clinical depression. I used to think I was the last person in the world who would have depression because I earn a few quid.
“I didn’t instantly go, ‘oh I’m depressed’ because it was a very slow process. It chipped away at me, with all of the things you have to do, things you have to deal with as a parent of children with autism.
“But it dawned on me that, that’s it, that’s it forever. There’s no ‘they’ll get better as the years go on.'”
The couple also used the documentary to visit school children and young adults with autism to find out what the future may hold for their own children, dispel dangerous myths surrounding links with autism and vaccines, and even detail Christine’s own journey after recently being diagnosed with autism herself.
Former Manchester United footballer Paul Scholes also appeared in the documentary, where he sat down with the Top Gear host to discuss his own experiences as a father of a sixteen-year-old son who is both autistic and non-verbal.
Following the release of the documentary, viewers have been taking to social media to praise both Paddy and Christine for tackling such an important topic, with many admitting the documentary ‘changing their perspective on autism’ altogether.
One person wrote: “What a beautiful, open, informative and emotive documentary currently showing on BBC discussing #autism in our children. Thank you to Paddy, family and other contributors for sharing and opening up such an important topic for conversation.”
Another commented: “Paddy thank you for sharing your family and autism. We are beginning this journey with our grandson and the program helped so much.”
Paddy and Christine McGuinness: Our Family and Autism is now available to stream on BBC iPlayer.
TV & Film
BBC cancels Top Gear filming after Freddie Flintoff accident
‘We’ll make a judgement about how best to continue later this year’
Filming for the latest series of Top Gear has been cancelled after presenter Andrew ‘Freddie’ Flintoff was injured in an accident, the BBC has said.
The presenter, 45, was hurt in the accident while filming in December at Top Gear’s test track at Dunsfold Park Aerodrome, in Surrey. The BBC said: “Under the circumstances, we feel it would be inappropriate to resume making series 34.”
The broadcaster has said a decision on how to best continue would be made later this year. Following the accident, which happened on December 13th, the media personality received medical attention at the scene before being taken to hospital for further treatment.
In a statement, the BBC said: “We have sincerely apologised to Freddie and will continue to support him with his recovery. We understand this [halting the show] will be disappointing for fans, but it is the right thing to do, and we’ll make a judgement about how best to continue later this year.”
The crash is believed to have left Flintoff ‘psychologically traumatised’. The broadcaster has said the incident has also impacted the production team, and there will be a health and safety review of the show. Top Gear is one of its most successful programmes, and has had a series of different presenters since 2002.
It is not the first time the former England cricketer has been involved in an accident since he began presenting the long-running programme back in 2019, alongside co-hosts Paddy McGuinness and Chris Harris.
He also crashed into a market stall in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, in February 2019, and then in September of the same year, he also crashed during a drag race while he was filming at Elvington Airfield in Yorkshire – the latter in which he walked away unharmed.
After retiring from international cricket in 2010, Flintoff ventured into TV where he became part of Sky’s, A League of Their Own, and was also a contestant on the Australian version of I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!, where he was crowned king of the jungle.
Trying his hand at acting, he has also appeared in the drama Love, Lies and Records in 2017 – and singing in Fat Friends The Musical too. It is unknown whether Flintoff will make a return to the show at this time.
Long standing fans of the show will remember that former Top Gear presenter, Richard Hammond, also crashed at the same airfield track in a high-speed accident in 2006. The accident left him in a coma for a period of time while he made a full recovery from a brain injury.
He survived and ultimately returned to the series alongside fellow hosts Jeremy Clarkson and James May. The trio left Top Gear in 2015 after an altercation between Clarkson and a producer.
Last month, Hammond said he worried the crash would be responsible for his worsening memory.
TV & Film
Ed Sheeran breaks down over wife’s health issues in emotional new documentary
Ed Sheeran broke down over his wife Cherry Seaborn’s health issues
Ed Sheeran breaks down in tears in new emotional documentary as he talks about his wife Cherry Seaborn’s health issues and the death of his best friend Jamal Edwards.
The pop sensation can be seen breaking down into tears in the first trailer for his new documentary series, The Sum Of It All. The singer, 32, will be showing the ups and downs in his life on the road to stardom in the four-part series on Disney+, airing on Wednesday May 3rd.
As reported in The Mail Online, the clip begins with Ed talking about his childhood, growing up with a stutter, and saying: “That guy doesn’t grow up to be a pop star. It’s so unlikely,” — referring to himself. Childhood videos of Sheeran are interspersed with clips of him on stage during his sellout arena tours.
Fans will be taken through a journey from the beginning of his career, as they will see him first starting out in the industry, working his way up. As viewers watch the timeline of events, they will watch as Sheeran describes first meeting his best friend Jamal Edwards, who gave him his first big break, and their friendship until his sudden death last year.
Edwards, a music producer and son of Brenda Edwards (Loose Women), tragically died after suffering a cardiac arrest brought on by taking cocaine and drinking alcohol in February 2022, at the age of 31. Sheeran’s wife Cherry Seaborn is also seen in the docuseries, as clips show her pregnant with the couple’s two children Lyra, two and Jupiter, 10 months old.
They are seen going on dates together with Ed saying: “Everything in my life sort of got so much better when Cherry came into it.” The series also delves into the health issues Cherry faced and the impact it had on the pair.
Just recently, Sheeran revealed they were plagued with ‘fear, depression and anxiety’ after Cherry was diagnosed with a tumour while she was pregnant with their second child. But she was unable to receive any treatment for it until after the birth.
The popular singer is seen breaking down as he cries in the back of a car as the death of his best friend and his wife’s health issues become overwhelming. A clip is also shown of Sheeran crying on stage while Seaborn can be heard saying: “I’ve never seen him cry on stage”.
Adding: “He hasn’t had the time to process and be at peace with his thoughts.”
The first look trailer ends with clips of happier times as Sheeran celebrates his birthday, performs on stage and laughs with his friends saying: “Life can be unpredictable.” The popular singer recently revealed that the first single off his new album Subtract, is dedicated to his late best friend Edwards — with Eyes Closed set for release on Friday March 24th.
As he announced the release of his sixth studio album he said it had been inspired by the personal tragedies he had faced.
In a post on his Instagram account on Wednesday, made to his 42 million followers, he revealed the loss of his close friend who had inspired the track and that in the video he is ‘dancing with my eyes closed to try to get through it.’
Alongside the post he wrote: “Eyes closed is out March 24th, you can pre order it now. “The song is about losing someone, feeling like every time you go out and you expect to just bump into them, and everything just reminds you of them and things you did together.
“You sorta have to take yourself out of reality sometimes to numb the pain of loss but certain things just bring you right back into it. Blue was Jamal’s colour, but now is all I feel. And I guess music helps heal, so I’m dancing with my eyes closed to try to get through it x.”
Alongside the images, the singer posted two black-and-white photographs, where he appeared deep in thought as he reflected on the emotional toll he experienced over the past couple of years.
Sheeran’s latest single, Subtract is set to be released on May 5th with Asylum Records and Atlantic Records. It is thought it will be similar to the hitmaker’s earlier works, having his signature acoustic feel.
TV & Film
Davina McCall announced as host of ‘middle-aged Love Island’
Davina McCall has been announced as the host of new ITV reality dating show The Romance Retreat, which will see a group of single parents brought together in a villa in what is being dubbed the ‘middle-aged Love Island’.
The former Big Brother presenter and The Masked Singer judge, 55, confirmed the news in a post on her Instagram with a video of her showing her sheer excitement for the new show.
In the clip, posted today (Thursday March 16th), she said: “I manifested and I made it happen. I willed there to be an amazing new dating programme for grown-ups, people who have lived a life, who have been through experiences, bad, moving, they’ve had tough lives.
“They’ve got luggage but they deserve love and it’s happening. It’s coming to ITV soon.”
The Instagram caption read: “Omg.. I manifested and it came true!! I’ll be hosting a brand NEW grown up dating series for ITV1 !!
“This is a show for single parents who have lived a life, have stories to tell about their dating pasts and deserve another chance at love and I’m gonna help you. It will all take place in the most romantic countryside location!”
Fans of the familiar media personality congratulated Davina on the new role with one saying: “Oh my god, you really are a power house. I was listening to you talking to Steven Bartlett about this thinking what a good idea. You’re such an inspiration. Go get ’em Davina !!”
Another put: “YESSSSSS! You told me about this and it is SUCH a great idea forwarding to amazing, beautiful single friends now xxxx.”
And many more also wished her a huge congratulations. Davina encouraged anyone who wants to find love, and who has a child over the age of 18, to apply before adding: “It’s going to be amazing.”