Conan O'Brien to end daily late-night show in 2021, will pivot to weekly variety series at HBO Max
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Conan O’Brien will end his daily TBS late-night show in June 2021 in favor of a weekly series on HBO Max.
WarnerMedia announced Tuesday that the comedian will end his 10-year run on the cable network in June 2021. However, that will not be the last fans see of the red-headed host. In addition to a deal that will see him host a new weekly variety series for the company’s streaming platform, his popular “Conan Without Borders” specials will continue to air on TBS going forward.
“In 1993 Johnny Carson gave me the best advice of my career: ‘As soon as possible, get to a streaming platform,'” O’Brien said in a statement. “I’m thrilled that I get to continue doing whatever the hell it is I do on HBO Max, and I look forward to a free subscription.”
O’Brien moved over to TBS after his infamous falling out with NBC.
The longtime “Late Night with Conan O'Brien” host took over for Jay Leno on the network’s flagship late-night show “The Tonight Show” in 2009. However, after just seven months, NBC decided to bring Leno back, prompting O’Brien to flee the network for cable along with most of his staff following a brief hiatus that saw him tour the country.
Conan O’Brien’s daily late-night show is coming to an end.
(Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for iHeartMedia)
He hosted the new, self-titled show "Conan" until 2019, when he reformatted the series. The show reduced its runtime to a half-hour that abandoned the host’s traditional desk and chairs set and focused more heavily on an opening monologue and interviews with guests. Around the same time, he began his podcast, “Conan O’Brien Needs A Friend.”
In addition to the show, he regularly films specials featuring his visits to other countries such as Italy, Cuba, South Korea and Armenia with celebrity friends such as Steven Yeun, Sam Richardson and more.
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“28 years is a monumental achievement in late-night television,” said Brett Weitz, General Manager for TNT, TBS and truTV. “We’re incredibly proud of the groundbreaking work that Conan and his team have accomplished during the 10 years at TBS and are so glad that we will continue to have his presence on our air with the ‘Conan Without Borders’ specials. We celebrate his success and are glad to see it grow across our WarnerMedia family.”
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Casey Bloys, Chief Content Officer at HBO and HBO Max, added: “Conan’s unique brand of energetic, relatable, and at times, absurdist, comedy has charmed late-night audiences for nearly three decades. We can’t wait to see what he and the rest of Team Coco will dream up for this brand new, variety format each week.”
The comedian joined his late-night cohorts in recording their shows remotely in March at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. However, in July he announced that he was moving production of “Conan” to the historic Los Angeles comedy club Largo at The Coronet in an effort to both return to production and support the theater amid the pandemic.
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