Here’s a blockbuster that’s being quietly whispered: NBC denies it, but insiders say that the peacock network is pushing Jay Leno out in 2014 and replacing him with Jimmy Fallon. Insiders claim that the aging Leno isn’t what they need since Jimmy Kimmel is drawing that more valuable 18-49 younger demographic that advertisers like, and Leno’s aging demographic isn’t exactly what they need for the future. Further, Jimmy Fallon has proven himself to be a great success in his time slot, doing wonders with Conan O’Brien’s old show.
And more blockbuster news is that Tina Fey could become the first female late night hostess, as Fey signed a four year deal with NBC for more production, although her 30 ROCK show has completed production.
The same insiders claim that NBC will make a huge announcement in May, and the entire situation will become clear. But, Jay Leno has had to cut his own salary significantly to avoid more cuts to his staff, but already lost about 20 staffers in NBC’s efforts to reduce costs in the face of sagging ratings. Now, NBC is looking to cut Jay Leno entirely. Both Leno and David Letterman’s contracts expire in 2014, so you might see a shakeup over at CBS as well, where Letterman might decide that it’s time to exit. Letterman’s sidekick for years, Paul Shaffer has already expressed a willingness to retire, and the end of Jay Leno may be sign for Letterman to leave as well.