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NBC to Conan O'Brien: Pants on Fire!

5/4/2010 4:55 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

NBC is pissed at Conan O'Brien and claims he lied during his "60 Minutes" interview.

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Network sources tell TMZ Conan was flat out wrong when he said NBC gave him the axe rather than Leno because Jay's buyout would have been bigger. Sources say the buyouts for Conan and Jay were roughly the same. TMZ broke the story Conan took home $32.5 million from his severance package with NBC.

And our network sources say Coco was just plain lying in response to Steve Kroft's question:

Kroft:  "They said that the -- for the first time in history, 'The Tonight Show' was losing money."

Conan:  "I don't see how that's, I honestly don't see how that's possible.  It's really not possible.  It isn't possible."

NBC sources say the show would not only have lost more than $5 million this year had they kept Conan on, but the loss was specifically discussed with Conan -- "They were well-informed of that fact," said one source.


184 COMMENTS

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1.

Truth    

Well informed? It seems like these NBC sources don't realize that Conan was calling them liars.



NBC sources, just because you lie to someone and expect them to take it as truth doesn't mean it is truth.



I am Truth.

1549 days ago
2.

Ann    

Conan is so pathetic. The guy is a TALK SHOW HOST. And not a funny one. Plucked out of obscurity a long time ago by the whim of some studio suit. And he acts like all this nonsense is worthy of headline news cycles day after day. He is just a typical narcissistic Hollywood idiot who has a bloated ego. Conan, you're a talk show host, not Gandhi. Take your 30 mill and get over it idiot.

1549 days ago
3.

Nicole    

I believe Conan.

1549 days ago
4.

Mary Bailey    

NBC sources, why would they lie? I mean NBC's image during the Conan fiasco was flawless -- Oh, wait...



TMZ being a corporate shill again? How shocking!

1549 days ago
5.

Metal Muse    

Jay is so pathetic. The guy is a TALK SHOW HOST. And not a funny one, seriously he steals jokes. Plucked out of obscurity a long time ago by the whim of some studio suit to replace letterman. And he acts like all this nonsense is worthy of headline news
cycles day after day. He is just a typical narcissistic Hollywood idiot who has a bloated ego. Jay, you're a talk show host, not Gandhi. Take your Car collection and get over it idiot.



Thanks Ann, mad libs are fun. Maybe next time you should watch the interview and read the TMZ article before you decide to comment.

1549 days ago
6.

Metal Muse    

Jay is so pathetic. The guy is a TALK SHOW HOST. And not a funny one, seriously he steals jokes. Plucked out of obscurity a long time ago by the whim of some studio suit to replace letterman. And he acts like all this nonsense is worthy of headline news
cycles day after day. He is just a typical narcissistic Hollywood idiot who has a bloated ego. Jay, you're a talk show host, not Gandhi. Take your Car collection and get over it idiot.



Thanks Ann, mad libs are fun. Maybe next time you should watch the interview and read the TMZ article before you decide to comment.

1549 days ago
7.

Nicole    

NBC will say or do anything if they think it might discredit Conan. I would like more interviews with Conan please. The angrier NBC gets the better!

1549 days ago
8.

The Quag    

I can't believe that NBC made me freaking wait for 4 years to see Conan as the host of the tonight show and only had enough faith in his future to allow him 6 months before factoring in potential losses of advertising revenue and deciding not to allow him time to wear in his new shoes, to see what he could do. They will learn how wrong they are, by the loss of a major demographic, GEN X. I now turn to COPS at 11:30 because I would rather watch real criminals get busted than watching GAY LENO try to steal the spotlight. Long live Conan.. The Quag

1549 days ago
9.

Criss    

Well, obviously that's gonna be NBC's response.

1549 days ago
10.

anti-lame    

If you're old, lame, conservative, and lack imagination, you just may be a Jay Leno fan. If you saw Leno at the National Press Club dinner, you saw just how un-funny he is. He's not nearly as brilliant as Conan, or Steve Colbert, or Bill Maher, or even Craig Ferguson.



1549 days ago
11.

A.Z. Palta    

I heard the rumor that the Tonight Show w/ Conan was losing money which I do find hard to believe. But I was wondering if NBC was twisting the truth via the cost of building the new studios in Universal City. Given the large cost of building a new studio, is it the case that NBC played with the accounting to push most of the cost in the early years to make the Tonight show "unprofitable" for P.R. reasons?



I'm sure NBC will never show the basis for their statement which makes me more suspect of their claim.

1549 days ago
12.

this story is lame...like leno    

What a crock of ****! If NBC is claiming that they didn't lose money in the days that that bastard Leno took over for Carson and was tanking, then they ARE lying! Everyone and their mother knows that the ratings were in the toilet at that point. But, for some godforsaken reason, the NBC retards left him there, and now the average American late-night viewer sets their sense of humor dial to Leno's mind-numbing blatherings. Way to go on the 'network sources', TMZ...your informants are idiots.



BTW, if you're interested in doing some real research and writing some facts, TMZ, you can readily find information on Leno's previous three weeks ratings mirroring Conan's. Does this mean Leno's getting fired next??? One could only hope, if there's a God. Sadly, history shows that they still don't get it.



NBC et al. can suck it.

1549 days ago
13.

tanker    

The first year Jay(ass) was on the tonight show it was tanking badly. Then Hugh Grant got a blow job from a hooker named Divine Brown, got caught, and Jay(ass) had Hugh on the show and the ratings soared. So NBC has conveniently forgotten Jay(ass)didn't have such a great first year! They couldn't even give Conan the same amount of time they gave blubber boy?



I'm not a big Conan fan but since all this nasty business I support him 100 percent! Jay(ass) is not funny and I think he's going to find this will always follow him because he and NBC were ****s about it.



I hope Conan's new show knocks Jay(ass)into the Retirement Zone!

1549 days ago
14.

CanadaCindy    

Conan referenced that NBC said the ratings were down and viewers weren't happy (or something to that effect). Well, I know there was letter writing going on to NBC well ahead of Conan taking over The Tonight Show (years ahead in my case). I was one of those people suggesting NBC seriously think it over and that Conan was a bad choice from the get-to. I then 'voted' with my choice of late night programming. You can't lay this one on Leno. NBC brass made a bad decision in ~2004 and how they got out of it might have been poorly executed, however, it was them who had to make the tough decisions. Decisions to change players in corporations are made every day, not necessarily with this degree of visibility and not with 8-figure severance packages. Conan needs to get over himself. And oh by the way, most of us gave up our high school haircut somewhere coming out of our teens; it's time to find another 'do' Conan.

1549 days ago
15.

Cookie    

I hear a desperate network trying to cover their ass.

1549 days ago
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