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Wednesday, 25 April, 2001, 10:53 GMT 11:53 UK
Barry Norman to bow out
Barry Norman with family
Norman received a CBE in 1998
Film critic Barry Norman is ending the weekly film programme he has presented for almost 30 years.

Norman took his review show - which had appeared on the BBC since 1972 - to Sky television in 1998.

But the 67-year-old has decided not to renew his three year contract with Sky when it expires in June.

"We're very sad as this is obviously the end of an era," said a Sky Movies spokesman.


The film industry has changed and I find it slightly depressing that almost all the big movies coming out of Hollywood next year are based on comic books

Barry Norman

"But he always said that when he stops enjoying the show he will stop doing it."

Norman told The Independent that he feels that the film industry has changed for the worse and that he is no longer having a good time attending screenings daily.

"The film industry has changed and I find it slightly depressing that almost all the big movies coming out of Hollywood next year are based on comic books."

Atmosphere

Norman pointed to the downgrade in the role of the writer in the movie industry and the fact that the explosion of TV channels makes it harder to secure star interviews.

Norman has built up a reputation as one of the most informed and eloquent voices of the film industry, despite being satirized for his habit of ending sentences "And why not?".

Quentin Tarantino with Barry Norman
Norman with Pulp Fiction director Quentin Tarantino
He spent the early years of his career in Fleet Street and worked for 15 years at the Daily Mail newspaper, where he became show business editor, before moving to The Times and then eventually to the BBC.

When Norman left the BBC it was widely reported that the departure was amicable.

But Norman said that he felt belittled by the fact that senior management did not say goodbye after his 26 year service.

"It wouldn't have hurt John Birt or the controller of BBC One to drop me a note saying good luck in the future, but then it was really because of that kind of atmosphere that I left," he said.

Norman plans to write his memoirs and is in discussion with Sky about alternative roles at the network.

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See also:

13 Jun 98 | Queens Birthday Honours
Barry Norman's turn to pick up an award
04 Jun 98 | Entertainment
Barry Norman defects to Sky
11 Jun 98 | Entertainment
Desperately seeking film critic
22 Dec 98 | Entertainment
Jonathan Ross to host BBC film show
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