Back in 2002 when we were planning New TopGear, we used to reflect on the newly minted idea of a star in a Reasonably Priced Car and cackle quietly to ourselves.
‘Tom Cruise!’ we would smirk. ‘Tom Cruise in a crappy Korean hatchback!’
That was the gag: massive A-list celebrities finding themselves shoehorned into the kind of car they’d normally never be seen dead in. The whole thing was deliberately preposterous.
And so, frankly, was our dream of getting the world’s biggest movie actor into an affordable mid-range car.
Except that this week, after just 15 series, somehow it has come to pass. This week’s star in the Reasonably Priced Car genuinely is Tom Cruise.
As if that wasn’t ludicrous enough, he’s brought a colleague with him. Her name is Cameron Diaz.
It’s fair to say, we’ve have never, ever had two bigger guests and for the past week the air in the office has been alive with a sort of sweaty-palmed excitement.
The rest of Sunday’s programme isn’t exactly shabby, either. Richard is in one of those exciting extreme sports races we haven’t done for a while. James has a world exclusive crack at maxing the brand new, 1,200bhp Bugatti Veyron Supersports. Jeremy reflects on the life of Ayrton Senna in a beautiful and moving piece of film making that should momentarily appease those who think TG isn’t serious enough these days.
Yet strangely, all these genuinely excellent items are slightly dwarfed by the appearance of two Hollywood A-listers in our funny little Kia.
Eight years after we first giggled at the idea of a star in a Reasonably Priced Car, this feels like we’ve finally achieved a small but important ambition.
EDIT: We’ve just put up lots of pictures here from filming, for anyone who still thinks this is a Jolie-esque hoax. We’ll put all the rest of the pics from the show up on Monday, including some excellent Bugatti Veyron Supersport stuff…