This week on the show, Hollywood star Tom Hanks, actor Simon Pegg and singer and new X Factor judge, Nicole Scherzinger join Graham Norton for a chat.
Asked what is happening on US X Factor, Nicole says: “I haven’t said this yet, but I think it’s official that I have been made a judge.”
Describing it as an “amazing opportunity” she adds: “I’m kind of finding out (what’s happening) along with everyone else. It’s kind of crazy to read about it in the newspaper first.”
And, on working with Simon Cowell, Nicole says: “He is someone you can learn a lot from. But when we are in that room it’s all about the music and the talent and I focus on the contestants, its what I am really passionate about.”
Asked if he as been following the X Factor dramas, Tom says: “It’s front page news my friend, along with bad salads out of Germany – it’s the biggest news you can possibly get!”
Talking about the success of his career, Tom is amazed to be told that his films have grossed eight billion dollars: “Really? That is news to me! That’s extraordinary.” And, put to the test by Graham, Tom successfully lists his early movies in quick succession before adding: “It all becomes a blur after that.”
On making Apollo 13 he says: “It was the first time I was acting with only two other guys and the jokes became so filthy as of lunch time on the first day. And Kevin Bacon and Bill Paxton, who were in the capsule with me, know the foulest jokes and we were trying to out-foul and out-gross each other and that’s how we spent our trip to the moon.”
Tom, talking about his recent Royal encounter, says: “I was with The Queen and the President just last week and as an American I kept thinking, ‘How did this happen? Did I win a ticket?’ We got an email from the White House saying ‘the President and Mrs Obama would like you to join them for dinner at Buckingham Palace’ and I was chatting to Her Majesty and we compared notes on Shakespeare.”
Simon, who met The Queen at the premier of Narnia, says: “I have it on good authority that I made her cry. There is a sweet scene at the end of the movie and The Queen is sitting there wearing 3-D glasses, which is a sight to behold! They weren’t even gold plated on a stick but just plastic Buddy Holly style 3-D glasses ones – and she dabbed her eye with a tissue.”
Talking about performing for Prince Charles and Camilla, Nicole is reminded by Graham that the Pussycat Dolls choice of song was Don’t You Wish Your Girlfriend Was Hot Like Me, to which she says: “It’s a really empowering song. We were just giving that day!”
Modestly talking about her new movie role, she says: “I am in Men In Black III. It’s a cameo role but I open the entire film. It’s pretty cool and I have a bad-ass outfit – it’s a lot of leather.”
Talking about her first solo album, before performing Right There live in the studio, Nicole says: “I miss the girls obviously because we were like this girl gang, a force to be reckoned with, but I grew up on the stage and I love it so I’m having a great time.”
And asked if there will be wedding bells for her and Lewis (Hamilton), she says: “Well I’m really proud of us that we have made it to three years. Just last week was our anniversary and that’s not too bad as we live on opposite sides of the universe so we’ve made it work. Right now we are really happy where we are.”
Revealing themselves huge Star Trek fans, Tom and Simon challenge each other to trekkie trivia questions. Having great fun and revelling in the subject, Tom says: “Are we a bunch of losers or what?”
And finally, Graham pulls the lever on foolhardy members of the audience brave enough to sit in the red chair.
The Graham Norton Show, BBC One, Friday 10 June at 10.35pm