Late Night TV Returns With, Without Writers
David Letterman, Jay Leno, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel and Craig Ferguson returned to the airwaves last night, Daily Variety reports. Mr. Letterman, however, had the advantage of returning with his writers after his production company, Worldwide Pants, sealed a temporary deal with the Writers Guild of America last week, the newspaper says. All four shows touched on the strike, with Mr. Letterman touting a chorus line of dancers brandishing strike signs. Mr. Leno wrote his own monologue, in which he zinged NBC by saying that more people were picketing the network than currently watching it, the newspaper reports.
Leno Audience Pleased With Writerless Show
Audience members leaving today’s taping of “The Tonight Show” said Mr. Leno was funny, if a little corny, the Los Angeles Times reports. One audience member wondered how long Mr. Leno is going to be able to get away with his cheesy material if the strike continues for longer, the newspaper said. Audience members said Mr. Leno told them repeatedly that he wasn’t breaking any strike rules with his monologue, the newspaper says.
Fox Shifts Midseason Shows to Monday
Fox has moved “New Amsterdam" and "Canterbury's Law," originally scheduled for Friday, to Mondays, as the network sets in for a long strike, Daily Variety reports. The channel has also added a Thursday edition of “American Idol,” the newspaper says. Fox originally announced its midseason lineup a week after the Writers Guild of America went on strike. Now that a longer strike is a definite, Fox is giving its valuable scripted dramas a better position on the schedule, the newspaper says.
Writers Nix Golden Globe Waiver Possibility
The Writers Guild of America has officially clamped down on the idea of offering the Hollywood Foreign Press Association any waiver for its Golden Globes, set to air on NBC on Jan. 13, Daily Variety reports. This has left party, award and event planners in the lurch over what’s going to happen after the Screen Actors Guild informed its member that attending the Globes means crossing a picket line, the newspaper says.
Huckabee ‘Supports’ Writers, Oddly Crosses Picket Line
Picketers roamed outside NBC’s Burbank studios as Jay Leno returned to work, with Republican presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee as Mr. Leno’s guest, Deadline Hollywood Daily reports. Mr. Huckabee told the Associated Press earlier in the day that he supported the writers, and originally thought that all late-night writers had returned to work (as opposed to just shows owned by Worldwide Pants). The Writers Guild of America released a statement giving kudos to Mr. Huckabee’s remarks, but urged him not to cross the picket line, the blog reports. Mr. Huckabee showed up at the “Tonight Show” taping, and the Guild released a statement saying they were disappointed with Mr. Huckabee’s actions, the blog says.