Conan O’Brien paid a shitload of money to not work

January 21st, 2010 // 40 Comments

After lengthy negotiations, Conan O’Brien and NBC have finally reached a $44 million agreement that will pave the way for Jay Leno to return to The Tonight Show. People reports:

No details of the deal were immediately announced – though it is being reported that O’Brien may be clear to appear on another network as early as Sept. 1. The bad news: Triumph the Insult Dog will have to remain on NBC.

Last night Conan revealed ratings for The Tonight Show went up 50% since this ordeal started, so I can only assume NBC is already planning to replace Jay Leno three weeks into his return.

NBC: #1 in Running a Late-Night Line-Up Like That Episode of Lucy with the Conveyor Belt.

EDIT: Added video after the jump of what I can only assume is Jabba the Hutt on Heroin telling Conan to take the $40 mil and run back in 2008. (Thanks to edo Plasschaert.)


  1. annie

    Nooooo you can’t leave Triumph behind! UGH

  2. Triumph the insult comic dog

    I am gonna kill myself on Friday.

    Tune in

  3. James

    Fuck that slime Leno, I hope he fails and gets blown up by one of everyman Stanley steamer cars.

  4. Dyldo Mcfistenstein

    Why would Conan pay someone a shitload of money not to work? That just seems silly.

  5. adrienne

    I think it’s a shame that just because Jay Leno’s show didn’t work out for him [et al ] that the network just tried to push Conan out of the way and mess up his schedule for Leno’s sake. Why didn’t they put Leno in the 1205 slot AFTER Conan? And screw everyboby else, too? Well, Conan, for my money, I’d rather watch your show anyway. I never liked Leno’s demeanor or his humor. I hope you walk away from this, if you do, with a wad of bucks and succeed elewhere because you will. Suppose they put reruns of Johnny Carson’s show in that 10 o’clock slot? The ratings would go through the roof! That tells you what the public chooses to watch. He’s not going to have good luck. As for you, you’ll be fine. You handled everything well.

  6. Wow 44 Million! I would love to be in that situation. Plus, in a few months he’ll probably have a new gig on a new network. I’d say he did well

  7. Dyldo Mcfistenstein

    Why would Conan pay someone a shitload of money not to work? That just seems silly.

  8. jumpin_j

    $44M not to be funny? I should call NBC. I can do that.

  9. Now that’s awesome. Wish someone would pay me $44 Mil to stay out of their way.

  10. Ryan

    Actually, Conan will be getting 33 million and the rest will go as severance to his staff. Conan also offered to add to his staffs’ severance out of his own pocket.

  11. SATAN

    If he signs with Fox NBC will only have to pay the difference between his Fox contract and the 45 mil. I hope he signs a $1 contract to host a show on Fox just to make NBC fork over $44,999,999.

    Oh, and Fuck Leno and his simpleton show with simpleton jokes.

  12. J

    NBC will be known as the network that used
    to be on top.
    The move to put Leno back on the Tonight Show
    is the final nail in the coffin for NBC, Leno and the
    Tonight Show.
    Leno sucks harder than a crackwhore the night before
    the welfare check gets issued.
    NBC now stands for Not Broadcasting Conan.


  14. spicy

    really cant believe this is happening.

    jay leno is just god awful… i wonder what is going to happen next, like how bad leno’s rating will be.

  15. We are on your side Conando!

  16. Richard McBeef

    NBC might be happy short term with returning Chins McGee to 11:35 but that old dinosaur and the old dinosaurs that appreciate recycled Lewinsky jokes can’t be around forever. Then what? Then what, bitches?

  17. How I Rough your mother

    I know for a fact, Triumph can generate rating than any of the late hosts…give him the 10 pm time slot with a variety show perfect with my nappy time…how bad can it be…

  18. Maximus

    All I can say is that I hope all the celebs who have positioned themselves to be on Team Coco do the right thing and refuse to appear on Leno’s new tonight show. The only way for the artists of the industry to really take a stand against this idiocy is to ensure Leno’s failure by distancing themselves from him and the NBC brass.

  19. Triumph the insult comic dog


    never gonna happen.

    Here in America, money buys everything.

  20. maybe artie lange meditates when he does drugs. he knows the future and it f’d him up, thats why he wanted out.

  21. Jannie Baby

    How the hell can they leave Triumph at NBC? I’ve heard of idiocy, but isn’t this illegal? Seriously, could someone please explain?

  22. Bah, if Conan appears on another network in the not so distant future, we in europe probably won’t be able to watch him anymore. This situation will probably be as funny as Jay Leno…

  23. Rupert

    Fuckin’ Craig Ferguson’ll come in and kick that fucker Jeff Zucker in the face and then knock Conan and Leno’s heads together. Craig Ferguson over everything.

  24. SATAN

    #26, you can’t possibly be serious. I used to love Kilborn when he had that show, but since Ferguson took over, it’s just terrible joke/impression after terrible joke/impression and for some reason the audience just fuckin LOVES it. He obviously either pays his audience to laugh, uses a laughtrack, or fills the seats with ugly cheap Scottish people who lap up every stupid fucking “joke” he attempts. Either way, he’s a total fuckin tool and possibly even less funny than Leno.


  25. Rupert



  26. gen

    Aw, that clip makes me sad. Who could have the heart to kick out Conan? He’s so effing likeable. That’s the thing about Conan, to me, not only is he funny but his whole demeanor and appearance is just adorable. If you don’t like him, I’d imagine that you dislike puppies and marshmallows too.

  27. NBC = FAIL

    Conan has been on FIRE these last couple weeks, Leno has be flailing. NBC is making a HUGE mistake with this decision and it WILL bite them in the ass. Watch.

  28. Brian Wallace

    I think it’s awful how Jay Leno caused that earthquake in Haiti. Plus, the bad economy? All Leno’s fault. Jesus, you Team Coco people amaze me. An entire generation that SETTLED…that thought Dave Grohl and Red Hot Chili Peppers were the greatest in rock…that played video games even though they were over the age of thirteen…that thought the epitomy of style was a Yankees baseball cap…THIS is what you decide to take a stand against?!?!? Conan F’ing O’Brien is what matters to you? If a tenth of you Team Coco people had actually WATCHED his Tonight Show instead of gotten online and complained maybe none of this would have happened. I’m not a huge fan of Leno but the man works hard. He tried something different. Didn’t work. Next job. Listen, if you can’t run with the big dogs…stay the f off the porch, ok? He failed. He couldn’t get the ratings. Do you really think he’d be getting higher ratings a year from now? Five years? “He wasn’t given a chance to NUTURE his talent. He needed time to BUILD an audience.” It’s a TV show. Not a fern. What a bunch of women you are. Is it too late to send a gross of diapers out to Conan O’ Brien? What a child. And Jay’s remark about how to get David Letterman to ignore you (“Just marry him.”) was total. Jay Leno is an a-hole for being ruthless? I’m glad you losers weren’t around when Michael Jordan played. There would probably be a Team Will Perdue. I hear Troy Smith for the Baltimore Ravens didn’t get a fair enough chance at the starting QB job. Why don’t you march for him? Get over it. Please tell what genius I’m missing. Seriously. Give me some links. Send it to my email. Maybe I’m not intelligent enough to get the Masturbating Bear.

  29. wow

    Wow 31. Well I can tell you are missing a lot of genius in grammar. “NUTURE” and “…remarks was total.”? You come off as a bitter old man. Did someone not get his dose of prune juice this morning?

    If you really think these people are stupid then you are just as stupid for trying (rather poorly) to reason with them. It isn’t so much about hating Leno as it is about the way NBC handled it. Their choice of putting Leno before the news killed all their local news shows and in turn killed Conan’s ratings with a lack of a solid lead in show.

  30. SATAN

    did Leno really make that marriage joke about letterman? if so, it just shows how desperate that loser really is. one letterman burn by leno still doesn’t make up for the fact that he has been the least funny person on TV for the last 18 years, and will continue to be just as unfunny for the rest of his life.

    i swear to God, if you can’t finish at least half of Leno’s jokes before he gets to the punchline you’re fuckin ratarded.

  31. Jeff

    coco will never die!!!!!! on the other hand i hope chinny mc no laughs does, very painful and very soon, hopefully the day of his return to the tonight showw. carson must be rolling over in his grave

  32. NoNo

    44 million. Is that enough (Sarcasm)? Don’t patronize me. I hope a can sleep tonight.

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  34. The dude was flat out done wrong!

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  36. Kimberly

    No one better feel sorry for this goon. All he wanted was the money. Now that he has that, the selfish pig wants everyone to pay attention to him again with his sorry Twitter account. I totally lost respect for him.

  37. that clip makes me sad. Who could have the heart to kick out Conan? He’s so effing likeable.

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