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Very few things in this country galvanize public opinion like someone
trying to mess around with people's preferences in the bedroom.
I'm talking of course about what they watch on late-night television, and NBC found that
out a few months ago when Conan O'Brien, the newly installed host of The Tonight
Show, quit after the network announced it was going to push the Tonight Show into
tomorrow, and to give its traditional timeslot back to O'Brien's predecessor
Jay Leno. It triggered a lot of bad publicity for NBC, an outpouring of
public support for Conan and some of the best late-night jokes in a decade.
Conan walked away with a 32 million dollar settlement and a new cable show,
and NBC did its best to push him into oblivion, legally prohibiting him from
saying anything false or disparaging about the network, and from giving
interviews or appearing on television until...now. If you're wondering what
happened to Conan O'Brien and what he thinks about all of this, you're about to find out.
So what's with the beard?
The first day that I woke up and was no
longer the host of The Tonight Show, I remember the first thought I had is
"I am NOT shaving" and that was my small victory. Oh okay so I lost The Tonight
Show but I'll show them... I'll stop shaving.
This has been quite a year
Yeah......that's it we're done this was a lot of fun.
This year has been
is still incomprehensible to me the amount of stuff that's happened in my
life in the last year is... it's gonna take me a long time to process it.
After leaving the Tonight Show in January and hanging out at his home
trying to figure out what he was going to do with the rest of his life,
he decided the best therapy would be to get out of the house and back to work.
He assembled a lot of his old staff, opened a Twitter account,
"That's the tweet",
And began planning
nationwide comedy tour something that he had never done before
and one of the few things he was allowed to do contractually
"See how things play out"
We met up with him in Seattle. You must have been miserable the
last couple of months.
I went through some stuff and got very depressed at
times you know it was like a marriage breaking up suddenly violently quickly
and I was just trying to figure out what happened.
When we started putting this tour together,
I started to feel better almost immediately and then
this, there's no better antidote to what I've just been through then to do this every night.
"Ladies and Gentlemen..."
"I'll see you in a little bit." "Ok"
Why don't you go?
No stop!
You go! I can't do it!
"CONAN O'BRIEN!"
You know doing this tour though this is a huge milestone for me
This is the first time anybody has ever paid to see me can you believe that
yeah oh they they paid to make me go away (laughs)
"On the Road Again"
The legally prohibited from being funny on television tour has boosted his
confidence, kept him relevant, and provided an outlet for him to explore
his anger, disappointment, and anxiety with mostly self-deprecating humor my
"My Own Show Again...I just can't wait to have my own show again..."
"I'd even take a primetime show that's on at ten anything to have my own show again"
After forty performances in thirty two cities in the US and Canada, the tour will wind up next month
at Radio City Music Hall in New York, right next door to NBC's corporate headquarters
where this whole late-night Fiasco was cooked up.
I just want to say
I couldn't be happier, you were the only choice, you were the perfect choice you
have been an absolute gentleman in private
"Conan Rocks"
in the press
I agree Conan rocks. Good luck next week my friend.
Jay thank you for everything
Less than one year after Jay Leno handed The Tonight Show off to Conan O'Brien,
NBC decided to cancel Leno's disastrous primetime show and move him back into his old time period at 11:35 Eastern.
Conan's "Tonight Show", which was losing badly in the ratings to David Letterman,
was to be bumped back to 12:05 the next morning.
Was it in the back of your mind that, "look, if I don't do that well they could just...
just pop Leno back in?"
I'm a paranoid person and I think I'm the kind of
person that can come up with lots of negative scenarios but I remember
thinking that seemed like a...that was a stretch even for me.
What followed were some unpleasant discussions with NBC's West Coast brass.
It just felt like tthe tone went very quickly from
"take your time we understand this is a tough decision"
To (hits his chair and snaps fingers)
you know "Let's go".
You know and that probably helped me a little bit feel
like "you know what, this environment doesn't feel right, and I've been with these
people a long time and I don't like... I really don't like the way this is going."
And when it started to get toxic, and I started to feel that I'm not sure these
people even really want me here let's just...let's just...I can't do it.
Do you think they wanted you to leave?
Uhhh yeah that's crossed my mind
I don't know how thought-out this whole thing was, but if they wanted me to leave
it worked.
This is just really really hard for him it was watching someone's heart broken.
Liza O'Brien, Conan's wife, was one of his main
confidants and closest advisors during the debacle
Did you approve of everything that he did?
100% yeah.
You thought he should have left?
Absolutely.
What do you think of the way he was treated by NBC?
From my perspective it felt like they never really gave him the
job, that they said "we're going to give you this job in five years", and they kept
him with the company and they they you know he said "I won't go anywhere else
and I'll keep working for you and I'm in it for the long haul" and it felt like
they they lost their nerve to really make a change and that was too bad
It was a shame because it would have been great to see what he could have done if
he had had their full support and had some more time.
You've got this
non-disparagement agreement...
Do you have a copy because I haven't read it in a while
I keep one in my wallet (laughs)
It'd be funny
anytime people come up to me
"hey so what's the deal with uh with Jay Leno" hold on a second
He's a fine and good man...There we go put that away.
Can I assume that this interview
would take a different tenor if that agreement did not exist?
No it I don't think it would. The biggest thing people come up and say to me
in gas stations and restaurants
I have so many people say this to me
"Hey partner you got screwed" I don't and I always tell them no I didn't, I didn't
get screwed. I'm fine, it just it didn't work out.
Oh you did get screwed
You think I got screwed?
Well I think most people think you got screwed,
I mean Jay Leno thinks you got screwed, Jay Leno thinks he got screwed
00:07:41,000 --> 00:07:43,240 How did he get screwed? (laughs)
Explain that part to me...I'm sorry
Jay's got The Tonight Show, I have a beard,
and an inflatable bat and I'm touring city to city. Who can say who can say who won and who lost?
I'm laughing because crying would be sad.
Has Jay reached out to you?
No
No calls?
No I do not
I do not think I will be hearing from him.
We should get him in here
Is he gonna be a surprise walk-on?
No no no Okay
But we can call if you know his number or we and I'm sure he'd come over.
He may have caller ID he won't pick up
I think Leno would say "look I was riding
high I was number one and I was still number one when I left and Conan made
this deal with NBC and NBC said okay Jay we're gonna take you off the air in five
years regardless of whether you're number one or number two or what"
I think he felt like he was forced out by NBC at a time when he was a strong
number one and was pushed out the door
mm-hmm mm-hmm
That's his argument.
It's hard for me to get inside his head and argue his side
of this whole thing.
I was...here's what I can say; I'm happy with my decision
I sleep well at night
and I you know...
hope he's happy with his decision.
Do you think that Jay lobbied for this?
I don't know but...
what I know is what happened
which is that he went and took that show back
Do you believe he acted honorably during all of this?
(groans)
I don't...I don't think I can answer that
I don't think...
I can just tell you maybe
how I would have handled it, and I would do it differently.
You wouldn't have come back on the "Tonight Show"? If I had surrendered The Tonight Show and handed
it over to somebody publicly and wish them well
and then I don't would not
have come back six months later...but that's me you know.
Everyone's got their own you know way of doing things.
What would you have done?
Done something else go someplace else I mean that's just me...
He is equally disappointed with NBC the company where he worked most of his adult life and
with NBC Universal Chief Jeff Zucker who he has known since they were classmates at Harvard.
Has Zucker called you?
No.
You haven't talked to Zucker since this
offer was made to you?
That's right.
You know at some point I'm sure I'm gonna
bump into these people...
and you know I'm not sure we're going to be have our arms
around each other and drinking beer and singing old Irish fight songs
because I don't think they know any
You know I...I wish, this is gonna sound crazy, I do wish these people well.
Jeff Zucker was quoted as saying
"At the end of the day, the viewers voted,
and they didn't like Conan as the host of "The Tonight Show".
...Can I take back what I just said?
You take issue with that?
In my opinion, I don't think that's fair nor accurate, but he's entitled to his opinion
I think for anyone to say that the results were in after six months
that doesn't ring true to me.
Oh they said that the for the first time in
history that "The Tonight Show" was losing money
I don't see how that's...I honestly
don't see how that's possible. it's really not possible. It isn't possible.
Did you expect NBC to give you more of a chance?
Absolutely...I...yes
Do you feel like it was a failure?
My Tonight Show? No. Absolutely not.
Conan does agree with NBC's comments that it was a business decision motivated by money,
and he acknowledges that Leno had the more expensive contract and would have been even harder to let go.
Some people have reported that that NBC would have had to
pay him 150 million dollars?
mm-hmm yeah So if you look at it that way and you're
working at...let's say...I don't know you're working for General Electric and you
tell them you know "there's 'this' to make that guy go away or there's 'this'....
That decision is probably pretty clear and I think in my gut I honestly believe
...everybody knows, that's what happened, they did what they had to do,
and ok I get it and the only thing I take exception to
is subsequently people saying "Well you know Conan was losing money and you know
actually he was murdering cats" What? Whatever.
Last month Conan finally pulled the trigger on his future raising some
eyebrows by signing on to do an 11 o'clock show for the cable channel TBS
and not with a broadcast network
Oh I do not look down my nose at cable and I
think anyone who does isn't paying attention to television these days.
Because it is...this world is changing very quickly.
You got 30 million dollars that you didn't have before you've got a very
lucrative new gig on TBS which has a...an audience
that...
Very young audience.
...custom-made for you...it wasn't all bad?
That's the point I
keep making. It's crucial to me that anyone seeing this take they take
anything away from this it's
I'm fine, I'm doing great, I hope people still find
me comedically absurd and ridiculous and I and I don't regret anything.
I and I don't regret anything. I do believe...
...and this might be my Catholic upbringing or Irish magical thinking but
I think things happen for a reason. I really do
I thought the Lutherans believed that?
Oh my god...it is Lutherans. Okay
I believe that if I experience any joy in life, I'll go to hell
That's what I believe.
00:14:44,940 --> 00:14:47,260 But you get my point
"They threw me out"
"It happened fast"
"They said please don't let the door
"...hit your freckled Irish ASS."
"I hung around the house eating frosting from a jar"
"I got really into "Gossip Girl"
and sleeping in my car!"
"Yes I'll survive!" "Yes I'll survive!"
They kinda tried to kill me, but I made it out alive!"
"I've got all my life to live, I'VE GOT SO MANY SHOWS TO GIVE"
I'll survive! I will survive!
I WILL SUUURRRRVVVIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIVVVVVEEEEEE! :)
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Conan O Brien 訪問 | 60 Minutes (Conan O'Brien 60 Minutes - Full Interview)

109 分類 收藏
Stacey KU 發佈於 2019 年 11 月 26 日
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