Flat Line: Leno’s late night TV show is dead – officially

January 10, 2010 by  
Filed under Late Night

jaylenoshowWell, now it’s official: Jay Leno’s 10PM experiment with NBC is now over, with the station announcing Sunday that further production on the show has been halted, and it will endFeb. 12th, when the Winter Olympics begin. They’re now waiting to hear if Leno and “Tonight” alum Conan O’Brien accept its shuffle of late night airings.

NBC wants to put on Leno’s show at 11:35 p.m PST, on Feb. 28 (the end of the Olympics), but with 30 min. show showcasing his monologues and skits. O’Brien would follow at 12:05 a.m. PST with his “Tonight” show. It’s unknown how both will feel about the switch, but Leno is reported to be fine with the change; the snafu might be O’Brien, who might not agree with or like the change. If he’s released from his contract, it could cost NBC up to $40 million dollars, which is something they don’t want, needless to say.

We’ll keep track of how this shapes up, though we hope it doesn’t turn ugly for late night programming on NBC.

SNL Oops: Criticisms emerge over domestic violence skit with Rihanna as musical guest

December 7, 2009 by  
Filed under Late Night

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39SNL39Saturday Night Live” is making the wrong sort of headlines for featuring a skit which made fun of domestic violence – with Rihanna as the musical guest for the evening. Uhh, maybe the writers need to get their signals straight, it appears?

On Saturday’s episode, the skit was regarding Tiger Woods’ rough week, satirizing rumors that his wife, Elin Nordegren, attacked him before his early-morning car accident on November 27.

However, the show’s musical guest was Rihanna – a victim of abuse by then-boyfriend Chris Brown, which made the skit a bit — insensitive, shall we say. Several groups and websites have denounced the show’s “obvious missteps… when you consider that Rihanna was the night’s musical guest.”

We agree…not smart, SNL. Hopefully, they make some kind of public statement to address the issue (they have not up until this writing).

New Bar for Cross-Promotional Madness: Will Ferrell in Man vs. Wild

June 2, 2009 by  
Filed under Late Night

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manwildMovie stars will often do nearly anything or appear anywhere to promote a new movie,  but Will Ferrell’s Man vs. Wild stunt has made him the undisputed champion of this time-tested actor’s gauntlet.

The actor will appear on Man vs. Wild Tuesday night at 10PM on the Discovery Channel in a cross-promotional event and promotion for his upcoming new movie, Land of the Lost, remade from the famous TV show. The show features Ferrell and show host and survival guru Bear Grylls during 2 days in subzero temperatures of the north Sweden wilderness. Sounds like someone wants a big box office hit, and is willing to do anything to accomplish this.

Ferrell starts off by being lowered into the wilderness by rope from a helicopter before hiking with makeshift snowshoes through snow up to his waist. The highlight: dinner with Grylls in a cave, eating grilled reindeer eyeballs.

“Nine out of 10 actors would not do that,” Ferrell told the Associated Press. I’d imagine not. Considering Ferrell’s recent string of films have had mediocre box office results, he’s reaching pretty far here.

Ferrell’s trademark odd sense of humor is still front and center. In one scene, the actor scarfs down a Twinkie (packed for ‘emergencies’) as soon as the host has his back turned. But Ferrell said he wasn’t always thinking about comedy.

And how did those eyeballs taste, we wonder? “It’s like a gelatinous piece of rock,” Ferrell said.

We only hope Land of the Lost does well for him.

Tonight Show: Jay Leno near the end of the road

May 27, 2009 by  
Filed under Features, Late Night

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Jay Leno has been the face of The Tonight Show with Jay Leno for 17 years. And that long and twisting road is coming to an end on Friday.

It’s a job he won against a lot of solid competition. The Tonight Show is a coveted position for any host or comedian.  NBC wasn’t too sure at first, but Leno won them over. He’s only missed 4 days over those 17 years, and worked without complaint.

Late-Late night host Conan O’Brien will take over the show on Monday. But Leno isn’t really leaving our TV screens, in fact, he’s sort of moving up in time slots. “The Jay Leno Show” will air at 10PM Eastern soon.

At age 59, he’s finally hit “the big time”.

Johnny Carson (the king of Late Night, whose reign began in 1962) put America to peaceful and humorous rest for 30 years, and endorsed Leno as his replacement. Since May 25, 1992, Jay Leno has sat at this desk. It’ll be strange to see someone else there.

He has been well-liked. Sturdy. Unfailingly likable. A regular guy, that audiences identify with. Not a blockbuster or a highly controversial figure. That’s not his style.

He was just solid. Intelligent. And treated all of his guests with grace and humility, the way talk show guests should be treated.

Happy trails, Jay Leno, and may your new show do well.