James Corden may have been planning an elaborate musical number to open the first of three Late Late Show episodes to be broadcast from London, but the audience no doubt much preferred his last-minute change: a defiant monologue addressing Saturday's terror attacks in the British capital.
"I'm so proud to be broadcasting here from my hometown, proud to show off its beauty, its diversity and its stoic British determination to let nothing or anybody stand in our way,"” he said in a prerecorded message shot outside Westminster's Central Hall, a vast church where the show is being recorded, about 1 mile from where the attacks took place near London Bridge. "This is not a country that feels afraid."
Corden said that many of the Late Late Show team were out in the city Saturday night and were staying in a hotel just a few minutes from the attacks.
"Some people might say it's a strange time to do a variety show from this city. I couldn't disagree more," he continued. "We want the stupidest, most fun-packed shows we've ever made for you to celebrate London and Britain and everything it has to offer, and you know what: The people who carried out that attack would hate that."
During the show, Cordon also echoed fellow Brit talk show host John Oliver in attacking The New York Times, which has said Londoners were "reeling" from the attack, calling on the audience to cheer loudly to show they were "not in a place to be afraid."
Nicole Kidman – who was a guest on the show alongside Kit Harington – voiced her support to the U.K., saying she "wanted to be here to support England and London right now."
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