Wages slash in air for Jonathan Ross as Graham Norton moves to BBC1

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When his contract with the BBC runs out at the end of the year Jonathan could lose half his £6 million salary
Photo: © BBC 

Jonathan Ross could see his £6 million BBC salary cut by as much as half when his contract runs out at the end of the year.

The Corporation is looking to make financial savings which are likely to affect the 48-year-old Friday Night With Jonathan Ross presenter, who also fronts a Radio Two show on Saturday, the Mirror reports.

He'll also face stiff new competition from multi Bafta-winning chat show host Graham Norton, whose BBC Two show is being moved to a weeknight slot on One in the autumn.

Graham, 46, currently has a three year deal worth £7.4 million. This also runs out at the end of the year but Graham is said to be willing to take a pay cut.

The new show will mean the Irish comedian will have four major projects on BBC One, including his recent debut as the host of Eurovision. This weekend he launches family entertainment show Totally Saturday, and later in the year he'll front another talent show with Andrew Lloyd Webber.

An insider has told the paper Graham will "overtake Ross as the BBC's highest earning presenter". But Beeb boss Jay Hunt has insisted Graham has not been brought in as a replacement for Jonathan, who is reportedly yet to start talks over a new deal but is said to be keen to negotiate for his radio show. 

Ms Hunt says the move has meant there were now "two compelling performers who will be regularly on at 10.35pm."

And there are no hard feelings between the pair it seems. A friend of dad-of-three Jonathan – who returned to the BBC in January after a three-month suspension following the 'Sachsgate' scandal – confirmed: "He's mates with Graham. I'm sure they'll have a laugh about it."