Jonathan Ross to present TV comedy awards

Returns to Channel 4 where he began his career

LONDON -- Jonathan Ross will return to Channel 4 to host the British Comedy Awards, the broadcaster said Friday, after it wrestled coverage of the ceremony from ITV1 in a new three-year deal.

Ross -- known to British audiences as Wossy -- famously fell foul of BBC bosses two years ago when a lewd phonecall was broadcast on Radio 2.

Britain's highest-paid star was subsequently suspended from the airwaves for 12 weeks, but though he returned he eventually parted company with the pubcaster earlier this year.

Since then he is thought to have had talks with new Channel 4 boss David Abraham, but no long-term projects have been decided.

Ross began his TV career on Channel 4 as host of a late-night Letterman style show "The Last Resort" in the late 1980s. His return to host the Comedy Awards on Channel 4 for the next three years will allow him to take an edgier more risque stance than when he hosted the same awards on ITV.

The broadcaster said it would revert to transmitting the show after the 9 p.m. watershed and would broadcast it live to inject "spontaneity, excitement and edge into the new-look show."
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