The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Lifestyle

April 4, 2013

Leno to leave NBC's 'Tonight Show' next spring

(Continued)

He devoted his Top 10 list to "things we'll miss about Jay Leno," including this at No. 4: "Can't remember the name of the bit, but it's the one where Jay is walking."

NBC has been quietly building a new studio for Fallon at its Rockefeller Center headquarters. "Tonight" began in New York in the 1950s, but Carson moved it to California in 1972. Starting next year, Fallon, Letterman, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert will tape late-night shows in New York. ABC's Jimmy Kimmel and TBS's Conan O'Brien will be the top California-based shows.

"The 'Tonight' show will bring even more jobs and economic activity to our city, and we couldn't be happier that one of New York's own is bringing the show back to where it started, and where it belongs," said New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

New York state recently added a tax credit in its budget that seemed designed specifically to benefit NBC's move east with "Tonight."

While a storied part of television tradition, the network late-night shows find themselves with much more competition now with cable programs like "Adult Swim," smaller talk shows hosted by Chelsea Handler and the Comedy Central duo of Stewart and Colbert, and a device — a large number of people take that time to watch programs they had taped earlier on their DVRs.

NBC is worried that Kimmel will establish himself as a go-to late night performer for a younger generation if the network doesn't move swiftly to install Fallon. ABC moved Kimmel's time slot to directly compete with Leno earlier this year.

But the move also has the potential to backfire with Leno's fans, who did not embrace O'Brien when Leno was temporarily moved to prime time a few years ago.

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