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Chris Evans Biography

Chris Evans (born April 1, 1966, in Warrington, England) is an English radio and television presenter and producer.

Evans started his broadcasting career in 1985 at Manchester Piccadilly Radio as an assistant to Timmy Mallett and playing a character on his show called Nobby Nolevel (No 'O' Level). He was then offered a Saturday afternoon show & then the Weekday evening show, until he was sacked in 1987.

After working as a producer on Richard Branson's service Radio Radio, Evans went on to work at the BBC London radio station GLR, first of all as a producer on Emma Freud's mid-morning show. He went on to produce Danny Baker's Weekend Breakfast show.

Evans became a presenter on the station in early 1990, taking over a Saturday afternoon show. Three months later, he started presenting the Monday - Thursday evening show, entitled The Greenhouse, which went out from 7.30-10pm. He remained on this slot until the end of 1990

Due to TV commitments with BskyB, in Early 1991 Evans took over presenting his Round at Chris's show every Saturday morning from 10am-1pm, which he continued to present until April 1993.

In addition to his Saturday morning show on GLR, in March 1992, Evans began presenting a Sunday afternoon show on BBC Radio 1, replacing Phillip Schofield who had previously broadcast in the slot. His show called 'Too Much Gravy', was broadcast from 2.30-4pm and ended in September 1992. His move to Radio 1 was shortlived but seen as a huge success, with controller Johnny Beerling later admitting he wished he'd offered Evans a full-time show there and then. At the time, however, Evans objected that Radio 1 had tried to constrain his style, preventing him from using the "zoo" format, allegedly because Steve Wright was already doing that on the station.

His departure from Radio 1 was in part so he could devote his time to presenting a new Channel 4 early-morning programme The Big Breakfast in late 1992. Evans, along with co-host Gaby Roslin, was an unqualified success in the slot, which brought him national celebrity and considerable acclaim. In 1993 he left GLR to present his radio show with the same format on the newly-launched Virgin Radio, but this only lasted for three months.

Evans left The Big Breakfast on 29 September 1994 and formed his own production company, Ginger Productions. Its first major programme Don't Forget Your Toothbrush broadcast between 1994 and 1995. The original concepts involved proved lucrative for Evans as its format was sold to numerous foreign broadcasters. For all Evans achieved in subsequent years, this programme remains regarded by critics as his best television work.

In April 1995 Evans joined BBC Radio 1 to host the flagship breakfast show, and significantly boosted the ratings which had declined considerably since the departure of Simon Mayo two years earlier. His spell at the station ended in 1997 when he failed to turn up to work, following a long-running dispute over his demand to take Fridays off, in part to pursue commitments he had taken on as the host of Channel 4's TFI Friday programme, which had commenced in 1996. The show - devised, produced and hosted by Evans - combined celebrity interviews, musical guests and daft games and competitions and was initially a big success during a period when anything Evans touched turned to gold. It ended in 2000 after viewing figures declined. Evans, in fact, did not host the last season and let guests take turns. The format remained the same.

Evans returned to Virgin Radio to host the breakfast show from 13 October 1997, again prompting an immediate upsurge in listening figures. In December that year, with the assistance of investors, he bought Virgin Radio from Richard Branson, for £85m, and formed the Ginger Media Group, to control the interests both of Ginger Productions and Virgin Radio.

During the last quarter of 1999, Evans ran separate quizzes on his radio show and on TFI Friday, both called Who's Going To Be A Millionaire? (a reference to the very popular TV game show, Who Wants To Be A Millionaire). The million-pound prize was awarded on radio on 17 December and on television on 24 December. These were the first million-pound prizes awarded on either medium in the UK. The distinction of being the first quizmaster to give away a million-pound prize is often erroneously ascribed to Chris Tarrant on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, however Evans was in fact first by more than ten months.

Both the Radio 1 breakfast show and its Virgin Radio successor introduced the audience to Evans' loyal production team, all of whom were encouraged to play speaking roles in the shows. This led to producer John Revell presenting his own Virgin show at weekends and researcher Holly Samos earning a contract to model bras.

In March 2000, GMG was sold to SMG plc, for £285m. Evans continued to host the station's breakfast show, however, until he was dismissed on June 28, 2001, for (again) repeatedly failing to arrive at work. Evans attempted to sue Virgin Radio, claiming that he was unfairly dismissed and denied share options worth £8.6m. The judgment in Evans v SMG Television Ltd. & Ors 2003 EWHC 1423 (Ch) (26 June 2003) is here -. Justice Lightman found that he had been fairly dismissed and was not entitled to the share options. Evans was publicly criticised for his attitude by the judge. Virgin Radio countersued and Evans was ordered to pay £1m towards their legal costs.

Evans has a daughter, Jade (born 1986) by Alison Ward, who was impregnated through artificial insemination. Evans then married Carol McGiffin; the couple separated in 1994 and were divorced in 1998. After relationships with Kim Wilde, model Rachel Tatton-Brown (whose sister was a researcher on The Big Breakfast), production assistant Suzi Aplin, Geri Halliwell and Melanie Sykes, he married Billie Piper in Las Vegas in May 2001. In September 2004 news stories circulated regarding a trial separation. In spring 2005 it was confirmed that Evans and Piper would divorce.

He re-entered public life in early 2005, presenting the breakfast slot of UK Radio Aid’s day of programming for the victims of the Asian Tsunami, which was aired on most of the UK's commercial radio stations, & also the Brit awards in 2005 & 2006

Evans presented BBC Radio 2's coverage of the Live 8 concert in London. He has also presented a number of one-off Bank Holiday shows for Radio 2.

Evans joined Radio 2 on a permanent basis in September 2005, presenting a weekly Saturday afternoon show from 2pm-5pm. This show was well received and he was announced as the successor to Radio 2's drivetime show on Thursday 2 March 2006 to succeed long-time host Johnnie Walker, beginning on April 18th. His arrival in the slot saw more than 1,000 listeners complain. Lesley Douglas, the station's controller, issued a statement in response saying that Evans should be given a chance.

In November and December 2005, he presented OFI Sunday on ITV1. In a move described by Private Eye as Partridgean, ex-wife Piper was the first guest on the programme. OFI Sunday was cancelled after just 5 shows following poor reviews and very low viewing figures. Its cancellation led Evans to complain on air during his Saturday Radio 2 slot that he no longer knew how to be successful on television.

In early May 2006, Chris Evans, now hosting Radio Two's drivetime show, was named music radio personality of the year, defeating rivals Jamie Theakston, Lauren Laverne, Marc Riley and Tim Lovejoy to win. When accepting the award, Evans thanked the BBC for giving him "a second chance".

Although Chris Evans was born and raised in the town of Warrington, a majority of town don't like him due an accusation Evans made about the town, calling it " The pimple of the M62"


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