City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Reports: Conan O’Brien close to settling, will leave NBC

A last bit of news before I go on my honeymoon:

Conan O’Brien is close to settling with NBC so he can leave. The dollar amount is huge: in the range of $30 to $40 million, according to the New York Times. He may be able to start a new show on another network as early as September. The report said O’Brien will probably tape one more week’s worth of shows.

Fox is the most likely future home for Conan though affiliates may balk at giving up the local ad time. ABC and CBS are happy with what they have. At 11 p.m., Comedy Central  is home to Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. E! has Chelsea Handler. TNT has George Lopez. It’s a crowded  field. Conan may have to be flexible as he ponders his next move.

10 comments Add your comment


January 16th, 2010
10:59 am

I’ve only seen the Tonight Show with him a few times, and it really doesn’t seem to be the best showcase for his talents. I really enjoyed him later where it was a lot more edgy & irreverent — that’s where he shines. But even that took years; his old show was not funny for the first five years, it really took a while to blossom… Fox may be just the ticket for him. And please get Robert Smigel back!


January 16th, 2010
4:15 pm

I think Jay Leno will get some backlash out of this. His 10 PM show failed, so why does that entitle him to return to the 11:35 timeslot? I am sure Conan will land on his feet whatever he does, but he was certainly mistreated by NBC.


January 16th, 2010
6:45 pm

Did NBC bother to seriously consider whether part of Conan’s relatively low ratings (compared to Leno) may be due to the drop off in 11pm local news viewers… due to Leno’s 10pm show? That said, Conan really should have bucked up and taken the 12:05 shift at least for a while: Jay will pull back some of his old viewers, usher some portion of that to Conan, Conan seemed to flourish at the later hours and could’ve pick up some of the 18-49 demo insomniacs still up after Colbert (instead of competing with Colbert).


January 16th, 2010
7:24 pm

I was actually very surprised that NBC selected Conan to take over for Jay. I think he’s funny but I didn’t really feel like his style fit the way the Tonight Show environment. I agree with the previous posters htough. He is much better suited to a much later time slot where he can be more edgy if he wants to be. If I had to guess I’d say NBC knew that they would be in breach of contract with both of them and took the less expensive hit with Conan since he was not as established as Jay. To be honest though, unless they just have an outstanding guest or musical act, I really don’t tune in. :)


January 17th, 2010
12:52 am

Jay Leno pulled in 5.2 million viewers at 11:35. Conan has averaged 2.5 million viewers. Enough said.

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January 18th, 2010
9:29 am

Conan is funnier outside of late-night TV. Jay Leno was never funny to begin with. With the reach of the Internet, late-night talk shows are now redundant and passe.


January 18th, 2010
11:33 am

I used to like Jay, but I won’t watch him again, no matter what time he is on. Ousting Conan is a low and dirty trick and NBC has basically lost any support from me or my family. Jay should have taken is losses and retired. I thought that is why he left the tonight show in the first place.


January 19th, 2010
1:19 pm

This is not about who is funnier or who would make the better tonight show host. NBC made their decision a few years back and Leno agreed. For better or worse NBC decided on Conan and now are backing out. Imagine if you received a promotion for a job and the other person started a new job. After some time, the other person isn’t doing his job right and backs his old position back. Shouldn’t the company be loyal to their commitment and honor the decision they made.

war eagle

January 20th, 2010
1:59 pm

neither are worth the money they are paid. Carson was. Although-If the news can’t put you to sleep, watch a Braves game. Why are these shows on at 11:30pm and midnight? Don’t people have to get up in the AM and go to work? Put them on Saturday nite. Save electricity and money. turn off the station.


January 20th, 2010
4:04 pm

Leave Jay Leno alone!!! He rules the night spot. If you don’t like it
go to bed! Good night!