Jimmy Kimmel reportedly threatened to leave ABC if he wasn’t given the 11:35 p.m. time slot held by "Nightline," reports TVNewser.com, citing two sources close to Kimmel.
As previously reported, ABC announced Tuesday it will move "Jimmy Kimmel Live" from its midnight slot to 11:35 p.m., when it will go head-to-head with late-night staples "Late Show with David Letterman" on CBS and "Tonight Show with Jay Leno" on NBC.
The demand was the result of a new long-term contract extension that Kimmel recently signed, the story notes. When he previously signed in late 2010, ABC cut "Nightline" by five minutes to give more time to Kimmel, the piece notes, adding: "This was the next logical step.”
"Kimmel demanded 11:35, or said he would walk, and ABC acquiesced," according to the report.
Not surprisingly, financial considerations also played into the decision, the piece points out.
"While ‘Nightline’ is a very successful program both editorially and financially (ABC holds it up internally as one to emulate), the network simply bet that it could make more money in the long term from Kimmel at 11:30 than it could from ‘Nightline,’" the story reports.
ABC News, said to be unhappy with “Nightline’s” being bumped by an hour to 12:35 a.m., is nonetheless making the most of it, noting that the show is being expanded back to its original half-hour while also getting a “permanent” prime-time hour on Fridays at 9 p.m.