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Karl Pilkington

Karl Pilkington is a world-record breaking podcast star, TV and radio presenter and author whose next project is Karl Pilkington's Seven Wonders of the World,' an 8x60 documentary travelogue series which follows Pilkington as he embarks on a journey to discover the Seven Wonders, expected to be broadcast late 2010. He is also the author of three cult books; Ricky Gervais presents The World of Karl Pilkington,' Happyslapped by a Jellyfish' and Karlology.'

Karl was born in 1972 and grew up on a council estate in Manchester. Myriad unfortunate family incidents - including his brother being thrown out of the army for driving to the shops in a tank to buy a packet of fags and his uncle who slept in a rubber dinghy instead of a bed plus teachers who told him he would never be a high flyer - contributed to an unconventional upbringing. Karl disliked school, maybe because he believed that his teachers were profiting from his education and filling his days with menial and pointless tasks such as attaching as many stickers to a Thomson brochure as possible in 30 minutes.

Karl had a number of near-death experiences as a child which include nearly choking to death on a freeze-pop, almost plummeting to his death when climbing out of an upstairs window to do his paper round (it was blizzard conditions and Karl's mam had locked the door to stop him doing his round in such dangerous conditions) and the 'bad cream incident,' when Karl had eaten too many cream doughnuts which were discarded at the back of a local baker's shop. Karl survived into adulthood and after leaving school without his exam results (he got an E for History as Ricky Gervais revealed live on XFM, although Karl can't actually recall taking the exam) he went through several jobs - his favorite being his paper round - before finding gainful employment as an off-air producer at XFM. But he didn't stay off-air for long and his antics and opinions along with his fascination for odd stuff, distrust of animals and dislike of crowds meant that he became a much more vocal part of the show and has now become the cult hero of the XFM broadcasts. High praise indeed came from Ricky himself who proclaimed Karl to be "the funniest man alive in Britain today."

A series of record-breaking podcasts with Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant made Karl Pilkington a household name around the world and he's even had his face graffitied onto a garage door in Augusta, Georgia. The podcasts went to number 1 in 14 countries including America and have remained at the top of the charts for over two years outselling, albums, TV and film. Karl's classic quote "I could eat a knob at night" has spawned dance records, merchandise and a thousand online discussions - one such discussion leading to the conclusion that Karl isn't real but is in fact a comedy character invented by Ricky and Stephen.

The real thing was first seen in all his glory in a twenty-minute interview, which appeared on Ricky Gervais' live stand-up comedy DVD, Politics.' After a decade as a radio producer, Karl has now left XFM, taking with him a digital camera, which was his leaving gift and is now his girlfriend's after he gave it to her for a Christmas present. Karl is considering two prospective offers of employment - a paper round and dog walking - but only if it doesn't rain.

Karl Pilkington