NBC SAYS FALLON TO REPLACE LENO ON ‘TONIGHT SHOW’ IN EARLY 2014

(The following is a reformatted version of a press release
issued by NBC and received via electronic mail. The release was
confirmed by the sender.) 
JAY LENO ANNOUNCES HIS DEPARTURE FROM SUCCESSFUL 22-YEAR RUN
FROM NBC’S ‘TONIGHT SHOW” IN SPRING 2014 
Jimmy Fallon (NBC’s “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon”) to Assume
Reins of Iconic Franchise as Host 
UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. - April 03, 2013 - Jay Leno, longtime
host of NBC’s “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” announced today
that he will wrap up what will be 22 years of headlining the
iconic late-night show in Spring 2014.  NBC also announced today
that Jimmy Fallon, now host of NBC’s “Late Night with Jimmy
Fallon,” will transition into new hosting duties on “The Tonight
Show” franchise after Leno concludes his successful run. 
As part of the transition, “The Tonight Show” will be returning
to its original home in 30 Rock in New York and will be
executive-produced by Emmy Award winner Lorne Michaels
(“Saturday Night Live,” “30 Rock”). 
Programming plans for the 12:35 a.m. (ET) time period currently
are in development and will be announced soon. 
Said Leno: “Congratulations Jimmy.  I hope you’re as lucky as me
and hold on to the job until you’re the old guy. If you need me,
I’ll be at the garage.” 
Said Fallon: “I’m really excited to host a show that starts
today instead of tomorrow.” 
“Jay Leno is an entertainment icon, making millions of people
laugh every weeknight for more than 20 years,” said Steve Burke,
Chief Executive Officer of NBCUniversal. “His long reign as the
highest-rated late-night host is a testament to his work ethic
and dedication to his viewers and to NBC. 
“We are purposefully making this change when Jay is #1, just as
Jay replaced Johnny Carson when he was #1.  Jimmy Fallon is a
unique talent and this is his time.  I’m thrilled he will become
the sixth host of ‘The Tonight Show’ at exactly the right
moment, in conjunction with our coverage of next year’s Winter
Olympic Games from Sochi, Russia. 
“I also want to congratulate and thank Debbie Vickers and her
‘Tonight Show’ team for producing an entertaining, first-class
show every night for the past two decades.  Debbie’s role in the
creative and popular success of this franchise cannot be
overstated.” 
Leno has hosted “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” since taking
over the reins from television icon Johnny Carson in 1992. 
“The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” has ranked #1 ahead of its ABC
and CBS time-period competition in 18-49 viewers and total
viewers for each season since Leno’s return in March 2010 and
for the 14 seasons before his departure in May 2009.  During the
current season, “Tonight” is consistently #1 versus its ABC and
CBS slot rivals, averaging a 0.8 rating, 3 share in adults 18-49
and 3.5 million viewers overall. 
At 12:35 a.m. ET, “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” has
consistently ranked #1 in 18-49 versus the time period’s ABC and
CBS competition each season since debuting in March of 2009 and
has also held the advantage over CBS’s “Late Late Show with
Craig Ferguson” in total viewers for the last three seasons.  So
far during the 2012-13 season, “Late Night” is averaging a 0.5
rating, 3 share in adults 18-49 and 1.7 million viewers overall. 
Before Leno became the host of the top-rated “The Tonight Show
with Jay Leno,” he honed his comedy in clubs all over the
country often exceeding 300 dates per year.  He opened for the
likes of Tom Jones and John Denver and after moving to Los
Angeles began his career in television and film, both writing
behind the scenes and making appearances in shows such as
“Welcome Back Kotter” and films including “American Hot Wax.”
On March 2, 1977, Leno made his first appearance on “The Tonight
Show Starring Johnny Carson” and was named permanent guest host
in 1987.  While he took over the desk full-time in 1992, Leno
never stopped touring on the comedy circuit and still averages
over 150 gigs a year. 
Emmy and Grammy Award winner, Fallon began his TV career with
“Saturday Night Live” in 1998, where he quickly became an
audience favorite.  Known for his spot-on impressions,
innovative musical and comedy sketches and his stint as co-anchor of “Weekend Update” with Tina Fey, Fallon spent six
successful years on the show.  In March 2009, Fallon returned to
NBC and took over the late- night legacy with “Late Night with
Jimmy Fallon.”  The show has continued to garner attention for
its viral videos, audience games, A-list guests, and Fallon’s
choice of critically acclaimed house-band, The Roots. 
In just four years on air, Fallon and the “Late Night” team have
already begun collecting awards.  Most recently, Fallon was
honored with his second consecutive People’s Choice Award for
Favorite Late Night Host (2012 and 2013) and the show received
the 2012 Critics’ Choice Television Award for Best Talk Show.
“Late Night” was celebrated with a 2012 Emmy Award nomination
for Outstanding Variety Series and earned three Emmy nominations
in 2011, including the show’s first nominations in the series
and writing categories.  The year prior, Fallon earned an Emmy
for the show’s website in the Interactive Media category and
received the “Webby Person of the Year” Award in 2009.  Fallon
received a 2013 Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album after
releasing “Blow Your Pants Off” in 2012, a musical comedy album
featuring song parodies written and performed on “Late Night.” 
For artwork and a complete press kit from any show, please visit
the NBCUniversal Media Village website at
http://www.nbcumv.com/mediavillage/. 
MEDIA CONTACTS: 
Rebecca Marks, NBC Entertainment Publicity, 818/777-3030,
rebecca.marks@nbcuni.com 
Tracy St. Pierre, NBC Digital and Entertainment Publicity,
818/777-2940, tracy.stpierre@nbcuni.com 
Amber James, NBC Entertainment Publicity, 212/664-5019, 
Kevin Endsley, NBC Entertainment Publicity, 818/777-7827 
(bjh) NY 
#<873920.660640.3.4.1.0.76>#
 
 
Press spacebar to pause and continue. Press esc to stop.