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Leno and NBC Strike 1 Hour 'Tonight' Deal

1/14/2010 10:43 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Jay Leno has made a new deal with NBC, which gives him "The Tonight Show" from 11:35 - 12:35 ... sources tell TMZ.

As we first reported, under the contract Jay had been working under, he was guaranteed the 10 PM hour. By moving him to 11:35, NBC was in breach of his contract and needed to negotiate a new deal. That is now done, sources tell TMZ.

So Conan O'Brien is out, and Jay is restored.

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people keep on saying that conan's rating were not good. but people forget that Jay'a ratings were poor at first too then after time Jay came out on top. Conan has only been on TV for 7 months he hasn't even been given the chance yet.

But I don't completely blame Jay for this mess. It's mostly NBC's fault. They shouldn't have given Jay that 10pm show in the first place. When Jay left it should have been the end of him on NBC. Instead they kept the boring Jay Leno on TV. Jay was stinking up the network. affiliates wanted to drop Jay's show. That should tell NBC is wasn't Conan who was the problem but it was Jay.

1739 days ago


Leno the victim? Seriously? He knew years ago he was going to be replaced and, in fact, made a statement about how he *wanted* to retire from the Tonight Show before he hit 60. The reasons that Conan's show isn't doing as well as Leno did are: 1. Conan's show is still new, and is finding its audience 2. Leno's new show is doing so badly that NBC affiliates have been complaining about his show dragging the rating down on their local news, which if you think about it, would also drag down Conan's ratings. It's not Leno's fault, nor is it Conan's, it's the fault of those braindead NBC execs who decided to get rid of their dramas in order to shoehorn Jay into the 10:00PM timeslot. If Jay had any class, though, he would've just accepted the fact that his show failed and moved on. Instead, if this story is accurate, he takes Conan's own show away from him.

1739 days ago

A. Non    

If NBC was even halfway intelligent they'd realize that sticking with Conan would have been the better move in the long run.

You can't pander to the Boomers forever. At some point you've got to start building an audience with more longevity (aka, Gen X and Y), and had they committed to O'Brien, they would have had a jump start on the competition, meaning that by the time Letterman retires, Conan would be a widely familiar face that appeals to a younger generation. Whoever CBS put up to replace Dave (probably Ferguson, who is brilliant, btw) they would have a tough go of it starting fresh against a face like Conan who would have been established for several years.

NBC is far too short-sighted. How long do they expect to coast on Leno's conservative and mundane monologues? Who's going to take over the reigns when Leno finally hangs 'em up (granted he doesn't have a clause in his contract specifying that his corpse be sent to a taxidermist and propped up by a plank of wood with a speaker in his mouth so he can host The Tonight Show forever more from beyond the grave)? Surely they don't think Fallon will be ready to steer the ship by then.

1739 days ago

coco lover    

I'm with coco!!! Conan I will follow you anywhere!!!

1739 days ago


Did you see Jimmy Kimmel's 10 at 10 on Leno last night (Thursday)? Brave and Brilliant. He just turned the tables and stuck it to Leno on every question — IT WAS GREAT! So many former Tonight Show fans thank you, Jimmy!

1739 days ago


I don't get why everyone is hating on Leno. Firstly, it was NBC's decision to make the changes, not Leno's. Secondly, it's just good business on the part of the person negotiating for Leno to enter into the deal they did. And, thirdly, it was Leno's show to begin with! What do people expect Leno to do - throw away his career and millions of dollars to be a "nice guy"? It's easy to see why the hosts of competing networks are throwing Leno under the bus - they're his and NBC's competition. It's unfortunate however that NBC is allowing Conan to do the same for a short term ratings boost. Conan's whining and sense of entitlement is getting old. He says he wanted to be the host since he was 7 like that entitles him to the job. So what? So did fifty million other people. And, if Conan feels he must direct his anger somewhere, he should be directing it at the dummy that negotiated the contract that didn't protect him. What a loser.

1739 days ago


... And Jay's perennial dumping on his network-employer is getting mighty old and stale too. What's his beef? NBC always gives him what he wants; it seems they deserve and suit each other to a tee.
This gross imbroglio was probably scripted to get rid of Conan. The Jay Leno Show was hard to believe bad for a whopping four months. I mean, you really had to turn the channel or turn the TV off.
Jay might have got the kisser he deserves. ... (Leno called Kimmel's great impersonation — complete with big rubber chin and lisp — "cruel." )

1739 days ago


Conan is lots funnier and smarter. More Letterman-esque. Maybe NBC doesn't want funny and smart. Maybe they want old, boring and "safe".

I remember Jay Leno saying about 5 years ago that he was going to RETIRE in 2010 or 2012... what happened to that idea?

1739 days ago


f*** you Jay, you're a dis-honorable prick! I'm going to watch Conan!

1739 days ago

juli seutter    

I will be watching Lettermen not Leno! Bye NBC

1739 days ago


go Coco, NBC has 2 respect the contract. a contract is a contract NBC, don't u know anything about contracts?

1739 days ago

Nick Seapoint    

Guys, I know more than anyone else about Late-Nite shows:

1) Leno was the rating king in 09- a deal was made in 04 for conan to take over. Leno was supposed to retire for good

2) Leno changed mind and decided he wanted to stay on tv but could not renege on the deal with conan

3)NBC dont want to lose him to competitor -so they come up with this 10pm show which flops

4)conan is smarter than jay- but his show does not appeal to a wide audience. conan's rating are in the toilet

5)again, nbc dont want to lose leno. so they move him back to 11.35

6)conan needs to leave- let him get a new shop on fox and good luck to him.

7)leno back on the tonight show

Nick Seapoint

1739 days ago


NBC's decision to strip Conan of his show and put Jay Leno in his spot is heartless and short-sighted. I will easily boycott The Tonight Show with Jay Leno at the helm, and avoid all other NBC programming as well.

1739 days ago


Leno shreds the cheese.

1739 days ago


I can't believe they would let him come back first he retired then he gets another show at 10:00 p.m. He is the one that picked O'Brien to replace him in the first place he moves his family to Ca.then this happens. I for one will not watch Mr.Ski face.

1739 days ago
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