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Conan O'Brien

Bucks Up

for Screwed Crew

2/2/2010 9:16 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Conan O'Brien Conan O'Brien is shelling out his own cash to some ex-staffers who didn't get jack from that $7.5 million separation deal from NBC.

According to sources close to production, Conan's stagehands from "The Tonight Show" were not covered by the NBC severance plan. But we're told Conan is stepping up -- promising to pay his nearly 50 person crew at least six weeks severance out of his own pocket.

Conan's people had no comment.

The union for his former crew -- IATSE Local 33 -- says all the members who worked with Conan are "very happy" with the way he handled the whole mess.Conan O'Brien Pictures


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Fred Garvin    

Too many of y'all have short memories and don't remember that this exact sceneario played out in the early 90's when Johnny Carson was forced to retire.

But that was Leno's fault either: ooooh, his mean manager/agent did the awful deed. Jay screwed his buddy Dave, and screwed Johnny into a forced retirement.

Regardless, I think Leno should've retired anyway. He had the gig a long time and should pass it on and let it live and grow beyond him. Conan was a great choice and should've been given the same chance to "grow" his show.

Now we are supposed to go back to watching Jay's "funny" bits about how everyone is stupid --oh the hilarity!

1702 days ago


I WAS a fan of both Jay Leno AND Conan O'Brien, but I must side with Conan on this one. The reason Conan lost in the ratings against Letterman, was because Letterman conveniently pulled his little "sex-scandal stunt" at JUST the right moment. EVERYBODY loves a good juicy scandal. The fact that Letterman is a cheating douche-bag -- yes, the fact that he pulled a "Tiger Woods" actually BOOSTED Letterman's ratings higher than they've ever BEEN..... REGARDLESS of what was happening over at NBC. Besides, NBC didn't even give Conan enough TIME to win over the audience who were USED to Jay Leno. It would have taken longer than 7 months, but I think Conan COULD have won them over, if he'd been given a fair chance. I will NOT be watching Jay Leno when he returns. Of course, those who ARE siding with Leno are probably going to claim VICTORY after his first week back, because he WILL have high ratings during that week... This is because NBC will be LOADING UP the guest list on the Tonight Show (of course), during Leno's first week back.. They're gonna have all the biggest Celebrities and Winter Olympic Champions. Brett Favre & Sarah Palin are hot right now (they're on the list), along with names like Apollo Ohno, and Shaun White, etc... But let's just see how well Jay's return goes AFTER that first week, once that "brand new" smell wears off (again).

1696 days ago

James Lytle    

Good Man, if all employers had a heart when appropriate...

1723 days ago

alyse johnson    

I think Conan showed great integrity.He wasn't obligated to do anything but he took it upon himself to do what he felt was fair. You don't see that often. And almost never in the industry! keep it up Conan! I'd watch u anywhere!

1723 days ago

The Judge    

Noblesse Oblige... Conan is an officer and a farking gentleman. Honor and integrity before greed ? How unpatriotic !

1723 days ago


Just as I thought...this is a good, GOOD man who got unfairly screwed by NBC. I will watch him wherever he goes on television, and I will watch NBC as little as I can from now on.

1723 days ago


WWJD? What Would Jay Do?

Nothing 'cept polish his cars to the piggy bank.

1723 days ago

Jerry Martin    

What a nice guy.

1723 days ago


Enough about this poor millionaire already!

Also, I am very fed up hearing about and seeing news about the people in Haiti needing help after their earthquake. What about people in the USA?

Why aren't the celebrities helping our own people? Where are Obama? Oprah? Brad? Sandra? Madonna?

1723 days ago


KUDOS TO COCO!! What a nice guy. NBC execs are jerks. Jay was saying on "O" that he was forced to resign and hand over the show to Conan. YEA RIGHT! Jay stinks anyways and Coco will show up on FOX and get his revenge.

1723 days ago


Wow, something that makes Leno look ever worse...that did not come out of Leno's mouth. Jay has sure gotten egg on his face by saying he took the 10 pm slot to save the jobs of his staff. As many have pointed out, his move canceled out the jobs of the actors and staff for five dramas. Letterman must be experiencing one big perpetual orgasm over all this.

1723 days ago

Cheryl Sims    

Conan has handled this whole thing perfectly. I have watched Leno for the past 10 years, but after comparing the way Jay handled the mess and Conan, I will never watch Leno again.

Neither will my sister and her husband, and they have the Nielsen rating survey.

1723 days ago


Hey Sebastian Canada. It was NBC who wanted Leno on @ 10 because he was still under contract & they were too cheap to have 5 dramas so they put him in that time slot. They need him to bring back the Tonight Show ratings.Quit blaming Jay for NBCs stupid decisions.

1723 days ago


Conan has class. I miss him already.

1723 days ago

All your base are belong to us    

If I got $30 million it would be no sweat for me to give $3-$4 million to the people who helped me get there.

Like, come on. How many $millions does someone need to live. Even if I had $20 million afterwards... I'm laughing.

1723 days ago
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