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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres: Conan Edition



"Does Conan O'Brien reach as many people as before? No way. Does he make as much money as before? No way. But do his fans care that he's on TBS instead of NBC? No way! It's only oldsters who feel locked to the networks at the end of the dial. Younger people see the whole cable universe as a smorgasbord, there's no difference between channel 28 and channel 2. And oldsters are enamored of HBO, oftentimes in HD way up the spectrum. So, a low channel number means something, but no longer everything. Just like price and positioning at Best Buy and Wal-Mart still mean something, but less, especially in a digital universe. Think we've got chaos in the TV world? It's even worse in music. There's a limit with TV, Comcast, et al, can only beam out so many channels, in music, the universe is unlimited. But Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert are stars on cable. To the younger generation, they are Letterman and Leno. And who inherits the championship belt when the two L's retire? Mmm... Seems like the Comedy Channel guys. And the Comedy Channel guys win online. They've got the best linkability. That's the problem with network, especially Leno, they play it safe." (LefsetzLetter)



"It's the afternoon of April 2, a little more than two weeks before the man NBC dumped as host of 'The Tonight Show' is set to kick off a cross-country music and comedy extravaganza in Eugene, Oregon. O'Brien, longtime sidekick Andy Richter, executive producer Jeff Ross, a dozen writers and staffers, some band members and a slew of tech support types are at a nondescript soundstage directly across from Burbank's Bob Hope Airport. A sign just outside the parking lot directs visitors to the stage with just one word: Coco. There's no security at all. No fancy table of crudites or any sort of craft services to speak of. On stage, O'Brien's act is still taking shape. But the heart of it is in place. As the practice run goes on for more than two hours, it becomes clear things will have to be cut. 'There's too much show," one person at the run-through laments.'" (TheWrap)



"The national thumping that Conan O'Brien took at the hands of former corporate overlord NBC apparently taught the comedian one very valuable lesson: Ownership is everything. Not wanting be under anyone's thumb ever again, sources familiar with O'Brien's thinking say he was willing to take less money upfront—his salary, these insiders say, will fall between $10 million and $15 million—from new television home TBS in exchange for complete ownership of his as-yet untitled late-night program, which will air Monday-Thursday at 11 p.m. beginning in November. 'This deal isn't about money,' says a source involved in late-night television. 'This is about Conan not wanting what happened to him at NBC happening again.' ... While sources confirm that Fox's entangled affiliate contracts made doing a deal with O'Brien difficult, an overlooked but even bigger factor in the comedian's surprise decision to sign with TBS was that Fox wasn't willing to give him ownership. '[Fox] is really stingy about that stuff,' says a source who has negotiated television deals with Fox. A Fox representative declined comment, beyond a statement wishing O'Brien well." (Peter Lauria/TheDailyBeast)



"Howard (Stern) said that Conan is going to TBS to do a late night show. Howard said the story is great. He said that he's going to be on at 11pm. Right now George Lopez has that slot and Conan wasn't going to take that slot until Lopez called Conan and told him it was great for him to take that slot. Conan has made a deal with TBS to do a 4 night a week show for TBS. Howard said this is the kiss of death for Conan. Howard said when you're on NBC you're a factor. He said that what's sad is that Conan was sabotaged. He said he told Conan to stay at 12:30. He said Conan had to have that Tonight Show slot though. Then NBC fucked him ... and gave Jay his show back. Howard said that NBC really fucked the guy. He said that they're talking about what a shit head Conan was and they couldn't have orchestrated the end of a career better than that. Howard said that FOX was afraid to hire Conan just to get a 2 share. Howard said they have The Simpson's and other shows running at that time that make a fortune. Howard said George Lopez made the right move by having Conan take his slot. He said George gets it. He said that he's probably extended his show for another 2 or 3 years. Howard said Conan got a crazy pay out from NBC so he'll have a nice time doing his 4 day a week show. He said to put himself on the map he should be doing 5 days. Howard said he really should be on Monday to Friday. Howard said maybe he'll shoot two shows on Thursday or something. He really doesn't know." (Marksfriggin)

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