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Thread: The Tonight Show - NBC (formerly The Jay Leno Show)

  1. #161
    Bitten Critical's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Leno's New Show

    From what I've heard, Conan was getting antsy at NBC and they were worried he'd jump ship (ironically, to Fox, which is probably where he'll end up now). That's when they offered him TTS. Of course, after that his ratings got much better, as did Leno's. Conan has always respected the legacy of TTS and, I'm sure, has always looked forward to getting the show, but I can't say I'd call that "maneuvering."

    Whoever did the maneuvering, I think NBC may have effectively sunk TTS. Frankly, I've never thought of Leno's show as TTS - that died when Johnny left - so I guess I don't care what happens now, other than feeling horrible for Conan and how he's been treated. He, of all the parties involved, seems to care the most about the legacy of the show.
    Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.' - Isaac Asimov

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  2. #162
    a jumble of useless facts gracie's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Leno's New Show

    Just putting in my two cents worth. I really don't care who wins the late night war. I used to watch The Tonight Show faithfully when Johnny Carson was still on. I could never take Leno when he was a guest and dropped watching when he became the host. I've seen O'Brien from time to time and don't think he's as bad as Leno, but that isn't really a mark in anyone's favor. I'm just thankful for cable so I have a bigger choice than trying to choose between late night talk shows that all look hokey when compared to the master.
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  3. #163
    2 heads are better than 1 MrMet's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Leno's New Show

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiz;3799143;
    ^MrMet, how do you know Conan maneuvered and manipulated behind the scenes to get Jay out of the way? From the looks of things, I would say five years ago Conan made a commitment to stay with NBC late late night only if The Tonight Show was his next move at the end of five years. Nothing wrong with that. NBC could have said we can't make that kind of promise, and Jay could have said I'm not all that sure I'm going to retire in five years. Given that, Conan could have chosen to ride it out or moved on to greener pastures. Behind the scenes, I would have to believe, although I can't say for certain, of course, that Jay had much more leverage than Conan. I don't see how Conan could have orchestrated such a coupe against Jay.
    From reports that tell the story as you've recounted it here. Conan had options to leave NBC in 2004 for an earlier late night time slot. He let NBC know he was tempted to take one, and was not interested in waiting indefinitely for a shot at an 1135p time slot. Conan used it as a negotiating ploy, and in doing so, negotiated to push Leno out of the way.

    Do I think it was a legitimate move on Conan's part? I sure do. But it was a move in his own best interests, pushing Jay aside nonetheless. Sure, NBC could have said no. So could Jay. And at the end of the day, NBC made a decision back then based on what they thought made the most sense for ratings, and competition. They're doing the same thing now. If Conan were showing strong ratings, or a promise of strong ratings, at 1135p, I see no reason to believe that NBC would consider retaining Leno. NBC is putting their support behind the guy who they think has the best chance of delivering stronger ratings in late night.

  4. #164
    Guys... psycobabe007's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Leno's New Show

    Quote Originally Posted by Critical;3799183;
    From what I've heard, Conan was getting antsy at NBC and they were worried he'd jump ship (ironically, to Fox, which is probably where he'll end up now). That's when they offered him TTS. Of course, after that his ratings got much better, as did Leno's. Conan has always respected the legacy of TTS and, I'm sure, has always looked forward to getting the show, but I can't say I'd call that "maneuvering."

    Whoever did the maneuvering, I think NBC may have effectively sunk TTS. Frankly, I've never thought of Leno's show as TTS - that died when Johnny left - so I guess I don't care what happens now, other than feeling horrible for Conan and how he's been treated. He, of all the parties involved, seems to care the most about the legacy of the show.
    I agree that Conan has respected the legacy of TTS. You can see it in the set design for the show, bringing back the good ol' sidekick with Andy, and the general atmosphere of the show as it is today. I don't necessarily think that Conan was totally gunning or maneuvering his way into the TTS spot. I do think that Conan was offered a job with a competitor and presented it to his superiors (aka Jeff Zucker and crew at NBC). In their infinite wisdom , they came up with the succession plan that has now backfired on them. While I don't know if I could have come up with anything different, I still think that this whole 5 year plan was a huge mistake from the beginning and ended up costing NBC a lot more in the long run and IMO may kill the Tonight Show all together.

  5. #165
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    Re: Jay Leno's New Show

    Well, the WSJ is reporting that Conan will take $40 mil to go away nicely, and he'll be able to reappear on TV in a year.

    The thing that strikes me in all this is that the Zucker/NBC strategy for Leno at 10 and Conan on TTS might still be viable - in the long term. But you have to think multi-year and changing demographics and have the patience to wait for the eventual payoff.

    The big news in the current situation is that the affiliates don't give a hoot about the long-term, and they have the power to pull the plug. The stupidity in that strategy is that NBC has nothing to replace Leno after the Olympics, so how does that get the affiliates better ratings? Reality and game shows are cheap, but 10pm is too late for that programming. Drama works, but is expensive, needs star power if you want quick traction, and takes a half a year to write and ramp up.

    So the affiliates will get Leno back in TTS slot, but have created a vacuum at 10. Good news for writers that can work fast, I guess.

  6. #166
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    Re: Jay Leno's New Show

    An article I read said they were plugging in two L&O episodes (different series, I guess) into two of the 10:00 slots, a new Seinfeld reality show would go into one slot and Parenthood would fill another. Maybe they'll throw an episode of Dateline into the fifth spot. It looks like they probably had an "exit strategy" in place to fill in Leno's slot already.

    Bummer that Conan won't be on for a year. What will happen to his staff in that time? I read that one of his contract requirements was that his staff (who all just moved out here from NYC) be taken care of. Still, I wish he was going to be on sooner so he could take advantage of the groundswell of support he's gotten.
    Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.' - Isaac Asimov

    I was thinking of the immortal words of Socrates, who said, "... I drank what?"

  7. #167
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    Re: Jay Leno's New Show

    My understanding is that some of the ton of money he's getting does go to his staff.
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  8. #168
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    Re: Jay Leno's New Show

    Conan O'Brien Scores $32.5 Mil from NBC

    Conan O'Brien is losing "The Tonight Show" but he'll be getting a $32.5 million consolation prize courtesy of NBC ... sources tell TMZ.

    In return, we've learned Conan has agreed to sit on the bench until September. Translation -- he can't host another show until the fall.

    In addition to the $32.5 mil, we've learned NBC is also paying severance to Conan's "Tonight Show" employees. In all, we're told NBC's payout is around $40 million.

    But Conan probably won't see close to the $32.5 mil. Under the deal, any money Conan makes during the remaining contract period with NBC will offset the network's obligation. So, if Fox were to make a deal with Conan and pay him $25 mil during the NBC contract period, Conan would only score $7.5 mil from NBC.

    One well-placed NBC source told us something surprising -- looks like NBC may keep its intellectual property rights. So Conan can't take his creations -- such as Triumph the Insult Comic Dog and the Masturbating Bear -- to his next gig.

    We're told the Conan/NBC deal still isn't completely done, but it's very close.
    Conan O'Brien Scores $32.5 Mil from NBC | TMZ.com

    TMZ is also reporting that Conan has to wait until at least September to go on the air and that Fox registered the domain name CONANONFOX.COM a week ago. That may not mean anything other than them planning ahead, but it's encouraging. I'm posting the TMZ story because they've had a pretty good record with their stories lately.

    Sounds like Conan is taking care of his staff. That's not surprising to me - he's a good guy.
    Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.' - Isaac Asimov

    I was thinking of the immortal words of Socrates, who said, "... I drank what?"

  9. #169
    Premium Member dagwood's Avatar
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    Re: Jay Leno's New Show

    Good to see that NBC is taking care of his staff. I am betting he will show on Fox this fall. Fox is more his demographic anyway so he will do well over there.
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  10. #170
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    Re: Jay Leno's New Show

    Wonder how Conan would do in the 10 p.m. time slot. Maybe add some zany variety acts that would fit well with his general personality and brand of humor. Did anyone think of just having them swap time slots?

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