Sir Trevor McDonald Meets the Mafia

Two-part look at Cosa Nostra bad guys debuts tonight on ITV.

Debuting tonight on UK TV channel ITV, The Mafia with Trevor McDonald sounds like a firecracker of a two-part series.

The award-winning veteran reporter has been doing a bunch of press ahead of tonight’s debut, and in each case, he has no shortage of colorful production details to talk about. Here for example is a snippet from McDonald’s conversation with Hello! magazine:

”I got a little worried when we were driving through Little Italy in New York with a gangster called Mikey Scars and he saw some guys who have a warrant on his life,” McDonald said.

The 75-year-old, who has spent over 50 years working in journalism and news presenting, added: “I just didn’t ever for one moment think that any kind of remnants of his past associations would be still around, which shows how little imagination I have! But it was a slightly disconcerting moment and I was scared because he seemed concerned.”

Testimony provided in court by Scars, a.k.a. Michael DiLeonardo, helped lead to the conviction of more than 80 members of the Gambino family. When Trinidad native McDonald retired from full-time TV journalism in 2008, he had accumulated more awards than any previous British news broadcaster.

Comically, he told newspaper the Herts and Essex Observer that meeting mafia types was not nearly as scary as his newsman debut:

“I was wetting myself with anxiety over that one!” confesses the veteran news broadcaster, laughing.