NBC’s Jay Leno and ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel, the two West Coast late-night hosts under fire by striking writers for returning to the air last week without their guild writers, are going to appear on each other’s shows Thursday night.
"There are only three or five people in the world who know how tough this job is," Mr. Leno said in Monday’s announcement making the swap official. "Jimmy is one of them. It will be fun to discuss who's a good guest, who’s a difficult guest and everything else that comes with sitting behind these desks.”
"If Jay and I can come together and guest on each other’s shows, then surely there is hope for peace in the Middle East," Mr. Kimmel said.
The Writers Guild of America reached an independent agreement with Worldwide Pants, David Letterman’s production company, which owns both Mr. Letterman’s “The Late Show” and “The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson.” That deal allowed both shows to return last week with all their writers.
However, NBC and ABC, which own “Leno” and “Kimmel,” respectively, have not settled with the WGA.
As a result, both shows are being picketed and stars are being urged not to appear on either show, but to go to “Letterman” or “Ferguson” instead.
In addition, the WGA is contemplating action against Leno, who believes he is within WGA strike rules to write his own monologue. The WGA disagrees.