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Conan O'Brien Strikes Departure Deal with NBC

1/16/2010 2:45 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Conan O'Brien and NBC have reached a settlement in principle and the big announcement is expected Saturday, sources tell TMZ.



We're told NBC has already given Conan's lawyers a draft of the agreement and his hired guns were going over it Friday night. The deal should be finalized Saturday.

Once the deal gets inked, NBC will announce Conan is leaving the network. The network will also announce what we first reported -- that Jay Leno will get the full hour from 11:35 PM to 12:35 AM and it will be called "The Tonight Show" -- just like old times.

Stay tuned

239 COMMENTS

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46.

rebelle    

whats going to happen to all of conans crew and staff that moved cross country 7 months ago to a place where the industry is already jam-packed. what are they supposed to do? what about all the families of the crew and staff that were uprooted? alot of people were royally screwed in addition to Conan, but noone seems to be mentioning them...i feel for yall!

1657 days ago
47.

Reggie in Atlanta    

Assuming Conan goes to Fox, would he have the choice of where to put the show? Would he and his staff prefer staying in LA or moving back to NY? I'm sure Conan would negotiate taking care of relocation expenses for his staff if the move back to NY.

1657 days ago
48.

samiam56    

I can only hope Leno falls on his face, sad thing is..his Chin will break the fall.

1657 days ago
49.

Duke    

I never got into Conan O'Briens show. He was a great writer for the Simpsons though. I do hope he gets another talk show, however. Maybe FOX will pick him up. He was with FOX originally. I think Leno should retire from Late Night though. I would like to specials with him showing us his car colection though.

1657 days ago
50.

Lee    

George Clooney should be the next Johnie carson. People looked up to him and he made Hollywood look brighter. NBC would be smart to get Clooney and have him out shine Lettermen, and Lettermen can go back to interviewing Paris Hilton. The hosy has to be greater than the guests and in trun the guests would benefit by the it's status.
the guy is smart, funny, makes people comfortable, everyone loves him and he is easy on the eyes and may in fact keep many people up late. Clooney is the perfect choice and he should take a deal for no less than 48 million per year. Lettermen would sink in ratings and then we will all be laughing, and Clooney will become a billionaire, than someday run for office. He's at a perfect age for this, and could still produce movies or shows and do charity work. It doesn't take much to do the show as he would have writers write the jokes and he's already fluent on current affairs and the industry. Now guests don't even go to these shows, but if clooney was the guest, I bet there will be people lined up to be part of the show. Johnie Carson was the ultimate best and so is Clooney. Don't forget to thank me for this brilliant idea, and good luck NBC, and Clooney. Time for Lettermen to retire.

1657 days ago
51.

Shelly    

FINALLY!! This should have happened 15 years ago. Conan should have NEVER gotten a talk show to begin with. He's not the "on-camera" type; he is the behind-the-scenes type. He acts childish and is awkward in interviews. Leno NEVER retired or wanted to leave, people!! NBC is at fault with this mess, NOT Leno. I tried to watch Conan twice this week to see what he would say about what is going on and it was just too painful to watch. I had to switch the channel in 2 minutes. That guy is SOOO NOT funny. He does not deserve all that money, what a waste. What he should do is give that money to his staff that had to move across the country to L.A.; those are the ones I feel bad for. Now that they FINALLY got rid of Conan, they have to get rid of the other unfunny guy Fallon. So they don't have this whole mess happen all over again. GET BONNIE HUNT!! She would be PERFECT in the late night line up. If NBC was smart that is exactly what they would do. Enough with unfunny people already!!

1657 days ago
52.

TV Gord    

I can't wait to watch The Conan O'Brien Show on Fox this fall. He'll be able to be himself and not be bound by the stodgy NBC expectations and hopefully he and his full current staff--including Andy--will kick Leno's ass! And by the way, I'm over 15. I'm 48. Conan is funnier in one week's worth of shows than Jay is in an entire year. And I think that's being generous.

BTW, I got a kick out of the link to that Leno fan page above, with it's 7 fans. However, I think I'll stick with "I'm with Coco", which just topped 200-thousand fans in a week!

1657 days ago
53.

sueinwa    

Yeah Team Leno! NBC executes are righting a wrong done by forcing him out of the Tonight Show in the first place. Conan will find a home on Fox and his supporters can enjoy him there.

1657 days ago
54.

Clinton    

Yay!!!! Finally something good to watch from 11:30 to 12:30.

1657 days ago
55.

Lee    

Stars and the public are turned off by the drama. These guys jumped off the bridge already and you can go back. NBC is taking a huge bet on Leno. They want fresh, then they should ask Clooney to be the next king of late night. Johnie was a class act that made evryone look good, and people were nervous even because he was the ultimate show. You made ti johnie and you were a superstar. I say Clloney, and if not than I'm afraid Lettermen will continue to rule, but don't want to. He's been too cheap and rude and this chair belongs to someone with integrity and class. Your welcome George. My boyfriend thinks he's awesome too and thinks my suggestion is brilliant and a win win for NBC.

1657 days ago
56.

PrivateEntry    

$27.5 Mil. and no other network for 18 months, 6 mos-24 mos severance for staff based on tenure (over 1yr) approved and signed at 10:40 PM

1657 days ago
57.

Gil    

I was a fan of Jay, however, after this crap I'll never watch him again. Conan makes a great show, I'll follow him where ever he goes. I wish Fallon could follow Conan, the both rock. Jay is a tired prick, The Tonight Show has lost the greatness Johnny created, too bad.

1657 days ago
58.

DrunkReport.com    

sigh.... this whole thing just makes me sad

1657 days ago
59.

johnny blaze    

Congratulations Conan, you've just got Favre'd.

1657 days ago
60.

PolarBear    

NBC = Nobs, Buffoons and Cretins. NBC leadership is looking mighty spinny these days. Conan to leave the network? Is everyone in the NBC Programming Dept. over age 107? Leno should leave NBC too and start something other than a Tonight Show format show. It's tired, everyone knows the formula, so retire it. Can't wait to see what Conan cooks up. Letterman and Leno can start to feel very worried now. Screw the old guys, Letterman is turning into a sick pervert, his worldview is acidic sometimes. Leno is no improvement over Conan, that's for sure. Conan will win this. NBC loses at every turn.

1657 days ago
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