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.”
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.”
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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