British broadcaster Sir David Frost died suddenly yesterday of a heart attack while aboard the Queen Elizabeth. Frost was on the cruise ship to give a speech. He was 74.
Frost spent more than half a century on television. In his early years, Frost was involved in several comedy and satire programs on the BBC most notably That Was the Week That Was and The Frost Report. The latter program launched the TV careers of Ronnie Corbett and Ronnie Barker (The Two Ronnies) and John Cleese. It was on The Frost Report where Cleese first worked with Graham Chapman, Eric Idle, Terry Jones and Michael Palin thus planting the seeds for what would become Monty Python.
But Frost is best known as an interviewer. His most famous interview, of course, was with former President Richard Nixon with whom he recorded a series of conversations in 1977. These interviews would later be adapted to the stage and screen as Frost/Nixon. Frost was played by Michael Sheen.
I remember Frost as the first host of the tabloid program Inside Edition when it launched in 1987. However, Frost was dumped shortly after the program debuted and was replaced by Bill O’Reilly.
After spending most of the 1990s and the early 2000s hosting the Sunday program Breakfast with Frost, Frost joined Al Jazeera English in 2006 where he remained until his death.
Here is a short interview Frost did with Paul McCartney at the height of Beatlemania in May 1964. During the interview Frost and McCartney discussed a film that would be released later that year without mentioning its title. That film was A Hard Day’s Night. Frost then asked McCartney what the Beatles would do after that. McCartney replied, “I don’t know. Another film probably.” That film turned out to be Help!
Frost ended the interview by saying, “It would be a great pleasure to watch Paul McCartney in retirement, but it would probably be in the year 2010.” In 2010, both men would still be going strong. But all things must pass away.