PopWatch Entertainment Weekly's PopWatch Blog

Tag: Jay Leno (11-20 of 81)

'Big Jaw' vs. the World: A history of Jay Leno hate

Fact #1: Jay Leno has been the most popular late night host in America for the majority of the past 19 years.

Fact #2: Comedians, Hollywood insiders, and laypeople alike just love hating on Leno, and have been doing so consistently for over 20 years.

Why? In their minds, the reasons are legion: Because he stole The Tonight Show from Johnny Carson’s rightful heir, David Letterman, way back in the early ’90s. Because he refused to simply retire when NBC tried to replace him with Conan O’Brien in 2009. Because his primetime Jay Leno Show tanked, sinking Conan’s Tonight Show before it had even really begun — and eventually forcing Conan to leave NBC for good. And most of all, because they say his jokes are broad, pandering, and eminently unfunny — which is a shame particularly because once upon a time, Leno had a reputation for being one of standup’s sharpest and edgiest comedians.

So as Leno prepares for his final few Tonight Shows, he finds himself in a unique position: More widely watched than any of his competitors, yet widely reviled by the majority of his peers. How widely, you ask? Let’s take a look back at the most notable jabs, slights, and straight-up insults famous people have aimed at Leno over the years — starting shortly after NBC revealed that he, rather than Letterman, would become Tonight‘s next host. (Insert “Jay takes it on the chin” joke here.)

READ FULL STORY

Jimmy Fallon writes Jay Leno a truly thoughtful thank-you note -- VIDEO

Lots of folks in the comedy community make a habit of giving Jay Leno a hard time — but Jimmy Fallon isn’t one of them. Even during the Great Tonight Dust-Up of 2010, Fallon refused to jump on the anti-Leno bandwagon, preferring instead not to take sides — and to assure his audience that he was just “happy to have a job.” (Granted, unlike Jimmy Kimmel or David Letterman, Fallon was working for the same network as Leno and Conan O’Brien — so it’s easy to understand why he’d want to take a neutral stance.)

And even now, mere weeks before Fallon is set to inherit Leno’s on-again, off-again late night throne, he’s still erring toward humble and gracious. As a guest on Leno’s fourth-to-last Tonight Show ever Monday, Fallon feted his predecessor as “the nicest guy in the business” — before launching into a “thank-you note” bit that celebrated Jay.

READ FULL STORY

Miley Cyrus gives advice to Justin Bieber: 'I don't see a Miley mug shot'

jay-leno-show-miley-cyrus.jpg

Miley Cyrus has some advice for Justin Bieber: Stay home when you want to party!

Cyrus appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno last night, and Leno asked her about Bieber’s recent legal troubles. Cyrus voiced what many people have thought: Doesn’t he have people he can pay to make sure he stays out of trouble? Barring that, “Party at your house. Buy a house, and add a club to it,” she said to audience cheers.

That must be what Cyrus is doing post-salvia scandal in 2010 (a simpler time!). Noting she’s seen compilations of celebrity mug shots online, she points out that for all the scandalous headlines she generates,  “I don’t see a Miley mug shot yet!”

“I get the most flack of anybody,” she said. “I’m not doing anything illegal. I’m doing a lot of s—, but I’m not doing anything illegal. Everything I do is legal in California.”

Watch below: READ FULL STORY

Jay Leno deserves a dignified 'Tonight' exit

Jay Leno’s blitz of interviews in advance of his mandatory retirement from The Tonight Show reminds us that a graceful exit is hard to do — especially when people won’t let you.

Anyone expecting or wanting some sour chin music from the iconic comedian during his much-hyped appearance on Sunday’s 60 Minutes was probably disappointed. But it was tart enough, thanks to Steve Kroft’s decision to cast Leno’s story as a cultural flashpoint for a seismic generational shift, with aging baby boomers ceding/losing power to their kids and grandkids. CBS never accused NBC of ageism, but it used some choice factoids and soundbites from Leno to suggest that the network wasn’t doing right by its good and faithful servant, still the No. 1 player in late night. Following an intro in which Kroft cited research showing Leno to be the fifth most popular personality on TV and pitched his twilight-of-the-boomers premise, the piece proper began with Leno — jokingly — telling the story that he says he tells any newbie in the business, that the reason why showbiz pays so well is because “eventually, you are going to get screwed. That’s the way it works… That’s the way these things are.” No effort was made to define “it” or put “these things” in context (or ask NBC for comment) or what fairness looks like or should look like in an ad-supported business in which not all demographic groups are monetized equally. Leno might be the fifth most popular personality on television, but these days, that distinction comes with a trail of tiny little asterisks. READ FULL STORY

Jay Leno on '60 Minutes': 'Eventually you're going to get screwed'

60-MINUTES-JAY-LENO.jpg

Listen up, future Hollywood stars: Jay Leno has some advice for hopeful comedians.

“I always tell new people in show business, ‘Look, show business pays you a lot of money because eventually you’re going to get screwed. And when you get screwed, you will have this pile of money off to the side….That’s the way it works,'” Leno told Steve Kroft on 60 Minutes Sunday night.

To Leno’s mind, “getting screwed” is what is  — once again — happening to him. In the 15-minute interview, Leno was simultaneously defensive — like when he explained for the umpteenth time he had nothing to do with Conan O’Brien’s 2010 Tonight Show departure — and resigned to the next chapter, like when he explained that, at 64, he simply doesn’t have his finger on some of the “social” aspects successor Jimmy Fallon does. “I see him do a dance number with Justin Timberlake and I think, ‘Well, I can’t do that.’” (He also copped to not knowing the latest Justin Bieber single — which more than a few people would actually count as a positive.)

Looking back on his 22-year legacy (Leno’s final show is Feb. 6), Leno acknowledged he wasn’t always a critics’ favorite, but pointed out his consistent number one ratings as proof he must be doing something right. “You’re trying to appeal to the whole spectrum,” Leno said about writing monologue jokes. “For every smart, insightful joke, there’s a goofy joke ….that’s the trick. You try to have something for everybody.”

Watch a partial clip from the interview below: READ FULL STORY

Late night hosts slam Justin Bieber post-arrest -- VIDEO

Sure, Justin Bieber may have endangered lives when he was drunk driving and drag racing in Miami. But he gave late night some great material last night, so for that, we can thank him. Jay Leno, Jimmy Kimmel, Jimmy Fallon, and Conan O’Brien all took the opportunity to rag on America’s favorite/least favorite 19-year-old, and here’s what they had to say: READ FULL STORY

Louis C.K. reveals the missing ending to his 'American Hustle' ice-fishing story -- VIDEO

In American Hustle, Louis C.K. had a small role as Bradley Cooper’s boss whose penny-pinching, by-the-book ways stand in the way of the Abscam sting to nail corrupt politicians. During the course of their increasingly adversarial — and ultimately violent — interactions, C.K.’s mild-mannered bureaucrat spins a family ice-fishing story that he hopes will teach Cooper’s hotheaded agent a lesson. Each time they meet, he unfurls a little bit more of the tale, and Cooper’s character hates himself for actually caring how it ends.

Except he never finds out. We never find out, because C.K. never finished the story. Until now.

On The Tonight Show on Monday night, C.K. explained the story behind the story, which taps into the mad genius that is director David O. Russell. Click below to see how his fish story was supposed to end.
READ FULL STORY

George W. Bush made a pretty good painting of Jay Leno -- VIDEO

Tuesday night’s edition of The Tonight Show welcomed former president George W. Bush. Sorry — make that former president, current painter. (You may remember Bush’s work from earlier this year, when a hacker obtained images of three “in progress” pieces from the president’s personal email account.)

Forty-three explained that he’s been taking painting lessons in Dallas before Leno showed off a pair of the president’s pieces, including a painting of the Bush family’s late Scottish Terrier Barney — star of numerous White House Christmas videos — and one of his cat, Bob. (Bob is so named so that Bush “can remember how to spell it when I get older,” he said.)

And then Dubya pulled out his trump card: A portrait of a smirking Jay Leno, complete with American flag pin and the Los Angeles skyline behind him. When receiving the painting, Leno seemed truly impressed and touched.

READ FULL STORY

Jimmy Fallon discusses Jay Leno and 'Tonight Show' plans

Great news for viewers who just can’t get enough of Jimmy Fallon slow-jamming the news — it’s not going away anytime soon.

In an interview with the Orlando Sentinel, Fallon shared his plans for his move up to The Tonight Show, and explained that the Late Night team intend to pretty much do the exact same thing, just an hour earlier. “We have to. That’s my background from Saturday Night Live,” Fallon explained. “I do sketches, I act, I do impressions. It’s just part of my background, so I have to do that stuff. There’s a hole in late night for that. No one else is doing it. We started doing it five years ago and we’ve gotten really good at it. I’m doing musical stuff, ’cause I love music and so do the Roots. And people look forward to doing musical stuff when they come on our show….We’re doing our show as if we were doing The Tonight Show. It’s news to everyone else. We have been doing The Tonight Show.” READ FULL STORY

Charlie Sheen talks Selma Blair's exit on 'Anger Management' -- VIDEO

In June, it was confirmed that Selma Blair was out at Anger Management, reportedly after conflicts with star Charlie Sheen, who of course is no stranger to controversy.

On The Tonight Show with Jay Leno last night, Sheen attempted some damage control, saying Blair was out not because they clashed, but because — you’re not going to believe this! — the show was just going in a new direction. “One of our primary characters, Selma Blair, who played Kate, was written out because [the show] was not about our relationship, and the problem was too many people were still excited about the Two and a Half [Men] character and thinking the Anger Management character was a little dull,” Sheen explained.

“Her character leaves, and I start circling the drain,” Sheen continued. “So it’s really fun to watch and hella fun to play.”

Sheen circling the drain? Who could imagine it! Watch the interview clip below: READ FULL STORY

Latest Videos

Advertisement

From Our Partners

TV Recaps

Powered by WordPress.com VIP