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Posts Tagged ‘Jay Leno’

The Tonight Show Officially Returns to New York

The big late night rumor is now a fact: The Tonight Show is making its way back to New York. TV Newser reports that Jimmy Fallon is going to take over for Jay Leno next year, and NBC will be letting everyone know with special promotions during the 2014 Olympic games.

As part of that change, the Tonight Show is moving from California to here. A new studio in 30 Rock is currently being built for Fallon, in the same space that Tonight Show host Steve Allen once used.

Jimmy Kimmel, Fallon’s soon-to-be competitor in the 11:35 pm slot, saluted Fallon. “Congratulations to my dear, sweet @jimmyfallon – a formidable rival and an incredible lover,” tweeted Kimmel. Hahaha! Two guys loving each other is so silly and weird!

For more on this story, head over to TVNewser.

The End of a Long, Glorious Tonight Show Run for ‘Beautiful Downtown Burbank’

Sorry, Gary Owens, but one of very best things to ever happen to “beautiful downtown Burbank” is now officially ear-marked for February 2014 east coast relocation. The Tonight Show will soon be Jimmy Fallon‘s to re-invent, within Lorne Michaels walking distance.

As LA Times reporter Joe Flint recently reminded, it was Owens who first coined the phrase as a radio announcer and then made it famous on Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In. Although NBC may well  find a worthy TV ratings successor to occupy the main studio at Alameda and Olive, it will never quite be the same:

Carson, who moved The Tonight Show from New York to Los Angeles in 1972, also used the “beautiful downtown Burbank” line but never tried to take credit for it.

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EXCLUSIVE: Richard Rushfield Out at BuzzFeed

If you look at the masthead for BuzzFeed Entertainment, there’s a rather conspicuous name missing. That’s because LA bureau chief Richard Rushfield is no longer part of the operation.

“Indeed, I have parted ways from BuzzFeed,” Rushfield told FishbowlLA via email Saturday night after a long day at Anaheim’s WonderCon. “Wasn’t the right fit in the end, but I wish them all the best.”

The exit comes exactly five months after Rushfield joined BuzzFeed last fall to launch a west coast bureau. He leaves behind chief correspondent Kate Aurthur, senior film reporter Adam B. Vary, reporter Tessa Stuart, correspondent-at-large Michael Hastings and associate editors Louis Peitzman and Erin La Rosa.

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Hollywood Reporter Delivers a Leno Lollapalooza

You’d think a guy who took a huge pay cut in 2012 on behalf of one of NBC’s few TV ratings hits would be bullet proof within the network’s executive ranks. But while Matthew Belloni’s Hollywood Reporter cover story about Jay Leno does not pinpoint the two “high-level industry sources” that leaked information to colleague Kim Masters for a March 1 item, the embattled Tonight Show host clearly believes the bleed was carved from the Peacock. Rather than, say, a Big Four talent agency or entertainment attorney’s office.

From Belloni’s piece:

Sources say Leno, when he signed his most recent deal, expected it could be his last at the network. But he is said to have been upset by what he perceived to be an NBC leak to THR and by the prospect of another messy transition that would play out in the press.

Can’t blame (the soon-to-be 63-year-old) Leno for that. No comedian likes to be so consistently heckled, even a road warrior like Leno. The prospect of 16 more months of media-amplified cat calls of “You suck!” is no laughing matter.

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Tonight Show Reportedly Returning Home to New York

The Tonight Show has been an NBC staple since 1954. For the first 18 years of its existence, Tonight was recorded in Rockefeller Center beginning with original host Steve Allen. In 1972, Johnny Carson, already a decade on the job, brought the Tonight Show to Burbank, California, and with it all the stars Hollywood could offer.

Now a pair of bold moves are reportedly set for the once vital franchise that would bring the show “home.”

There have been rumors for weeks, if not months, regarding current Tonight host Jay Leno‘s status. The New York TimesBill Carter says Late Night host Jimmy Fallon is expected to get the coveted promotion by the fall of 2014. But Carter also reports Fallon will take the Tonight Show back to New York. Late Night with Jimmy Fallon is broadcast from 30 Rock.

The Times quotes a senior executive saying, “There is no way on earth that this is not going to happen.”

Photo credit: treehugger.com

Matt Damon Finally Turns the Tables on Jimmy Kimmel

For several years, it’s been the greatest running gag on late night talk TV: Jimmy Kimmel ending a show with the disclaimer, “Apologies to Matt Damon; we ran out of time.” Last night on Jimmy Kimmel Live, the double-punchline to that bit was finally delivered by Damon. In spades.

With a duct-taped Jimmy in the background, Damon at one point during his commando-host appearance gleefully revealed that Kimmel is a bitter, jealous soul who has auditioned for every one of the actor’s film roles:

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How Reddit Stole a Colorado Journalist’s Wizard of Oz Thunder

Friday was another bittersweet day for Rick Polito. Actor George Takei posted a screen grab on Facebook of the Boulder, CO freelance journalist’s hilarious bygone Wizard of Oz gag synopsis. However, because Takei sourced a Reddit user’s errant crop job, tens of thousands of people initially liked and shared an item that attributes the summary to the wrong guy: the late Lee Winfrey. (To Takei’s credit, this morning he added “Credit: Rick Polito.”)

Jay Leno first quoted Polito’s 1998 synopsis on The Tonight Show a decade ago. When the talk show host revisited the same material for a “Headlines” segment in late October, a Reddit user launched the synopsis on its merry viral way. With Polito’s name as the source author cut out. (It was visible on Leno, although somewhat cryptically, the attribution reads: ‘Inquirer Television Writer Lee Winfrey and Rick Polito of Universal Press Syndicate contributed to this report.’)

“Part of what bothers me is that both times, Leno presented this as a mistake in the newspaper, when obviously it’s a joke that I wrote,” Polito tells FishbowlLA via telephone. “My Marin Independent Journal TV column was syndicated at the time to the Philadelphia Inquirer and other newspapers.”

Jim Romenesko was the first to point out the viral mistake. “Romenesko did his homework,” Polito explains. “He called me up on that Friday [October 26] and then FishbowlLA picked up on it, as did Gawker, BuzzFeed, Entertainment Weekly and some other places.”

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Internet Catches Up to TV Critic’s Cheeky Wizard of Oz Synopsis

Fifteen years after being recognized in the LA Times by Roy Rivenburg as the “TV Listing of the Week,” a brief Wizard of Oz plot synopsis is getting a major new round of props thanks to Reddit and Imgur.

Jim Romenesko tracked down the author of the Kansas-busting logline, Rick Polito, who now resides in Boulder, Colorado and juggles a little freelancing with a lot of stay-at-home-dad duties. Polito wrote the cheeky summary during his years as TV critic for the Marin Independent Journal:

“It was just on Leno, it was a clue in a crossword puzzle, it showed up in Playboy, and people use it as their email signatures. Someday, I’m going to walk down the street and see it on a T-shirt and punch the person who’s wearing it,” he jokes.

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Jay Leno Rips NBC, Comcast on Tonight Show

Jay Leno used the first minute of Monday’s Tonight Show opening monologue to rip NBC and Comcast for the 20 layoffs from last week:

“As you may have heard, our parent company has downsized ‘The Tonight Show.’ And we’ve consistently been number one in the ratings,” Leno continued in the monologue. “And if you know anything about our network, that kind of thing is frowned upon. I have more bad news: turns out we’ve been taken over by Bain Capital. … I knew something was going on. Friday morning I woke up and there was a peacock head in my bed.”

You think Leno will get a call from management today?

The Tonight Show Cuts 20 Staffers

Nikki Finke of Deadline Hollywood reported late Friday The Tonight Show lost at least 20 employees while host Jay Leno took a major paycut to save as many jobs as possible as part of a “downsizing.”

According to Deadline’s NBC insider, the layoffs have to do more with Comcast than the ratings:

“I don’t think ad sales are off. I just think the people who bought this company, Comcast, wants to go through everything at NBC and get their money back,” an NBC insider tells me. ”It’s hard to go through those kinds of cuts. It’s more a network issue than a late-night issue. And I would say that Jay doesn’t get credit for digging out of a gigantic hole every single night. He’s a very valuable guy to NBC and someday everyone will understand that. He does a great job.”

Joe Flint of the Los Angeles Times reported that Leno’s salary went from $25-30 million to likely around $20 million.

In addition, the weekly show budget will be reduced from approximately $2.3 million to $1.7 million.

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