Irish television legend Gay Byrne has revealed how he was once asked to manage The Beatles and received death threats for interviewing homosexuals on The Late Late Show, Ireland’s leading talk show for decades now.
The Irish broadcasting veteran, now 76, has told the Irish Sun how he turned down the chance to manage John, Paul, George and Ringo during his time with Granada Television in the UK.
He has also confirmed that he regularly received hate mails and death threats against his family while presenting the most popular television show in Ireland.
“I did a lot of things that deeply offended people when I was on The Late Late Show, and I dealt with a great deal of hatred,” Byrne told the Sun.
“I always thought I was safe enough, because if someone’s going to kill you, they’re not going to take the time to warn you about it first.
“Some more conservative viewers were shocked and very angered by the show’s frank displays of condoms, pre-marital sex, abortion and homosexuality.
“I got death threats. People would threaten to set fire to my house, kill my wife, kill my children. But I refused to allow those threats affect my working or personal life.”
Now chairman of the National Roads Safety authority in Ireland, Byrne also told his Beatles story for the first time in his Sun interview.
He added: “When I worked in England before RTE, I introduced them for the first time on television.
“The third time they were in, Paul McCartney said they had no agent and asked me if I would manage them.
“Paul asked me to take on the job as manager, which I turned down for some reason. It was a real career choice. Anything was possible.”
Happy Earth Day! Ireland sure looks gorgeous from outer space