Despite earlier online reports that Jay Leno was leaving NBC due to the reshuffling of late night TV, Gossip Cop clears the air dismissing the rumors that Jay plans to leave the network.
An story posted this morning on Popeater.com claimed the TV host, who recently lost his 10pm time slot, is angry over the tension NBC created between him and Conan O’Brien, and upset he has been made out to be the bad guy.
However, a source close to Jay told Gossip Cop he’s not leaving NBC.
“He has a contract with NBC,” and is going to honor it.
Jay’s contract specifically guarantees his 10:00 p.m. time period, so NBC has to negotiate a new deal with him before he moves back to 11:35 p.m. time slot.
However, TMZ reported earlier today that Conan’s contract never specified a solid time slot for his program.
Since Conan’s contract did not define a guaranteed time period, NBC has the right to air The Tonight Show at any hour they choose.
In the contract, NBC did guarantee that Conan would host The Tonight Show, and the network is willing to hold true to its promise.
Conan’s main argument is that the The Tonight Show is an institution and airing it a different time than its 11:35 time slot, which was started by the great Johnny Carson — would do a disservice to the established program. He released a statement yesterday addressing the importance and meaning his program holds for him.