No deal, says Conan O’Brien, releasing a slightly strange statement to the “people of Earth,” saying there’s no way he is going for NBC’s idea to move him and The Tonight Show to 12:05 a.m. to make room for a shortened Jay Leno Show at 11:35 p.m., now that the network has decided that Leno is not working out weeknights at 10.
“I’ve been suddenly put in a very public predicament, and my bosses are demanding an immediate decision,” he wrote, placing himself not as just some talk-show host, but as steward of “the greatest franchise in the history of broadcasting.”
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He did note that he signed a contract six years ago to take over the show. “I . . . passed up far more lucrative offers, and since 2004 I have spent literally hundreds of hours thinking of ways to extend the franchise long into the future. . . . I cannot participate in what I honestly believe is its destruction.”
O’Brien acknowledged the speculation that he might go to another network, but said, “I currently have no other offer and honestly have no idea what happens next.”
Read More: By Jonathan Storm, Philadelphia Enquirer