Jay Leno's Primetime Show Canceled

Entertainment Jan. 10, 2010 AT 5:55PM
Jay Leno's Primetime Show Canceled Credit: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic

The primetime Jay Leno Show has been canceled, NBC execs confirmed at a Television Critics Association panel Sunday morning.

"Starting Feb. 12, The Jay Leno Show will no longer air at 10 p.m.," network chairman Jeff Gaspin said. "While it was performing at acceptable levels for the network, it did not meet our affiliates' needs, and we realized we had to make a change. My goal right now is to keep Jay, Conan [O'Brien] and Jimmy [Fallon] as part of our late-night lineup."

Leno's primetime show has struggled in the ratings since its September debut.

"I think you have to take chances. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don't," Gaspin admitted.

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Gaspin said he proposed "that The Jay Leno Show move to 11:35, The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien move to 12:05 and Late Night with Jimmy Fallon would then start at 1:05."

But the deal is not yet sealed.

"The talks are still ongoing," Gaspin said. Leno joked last week about moving to Fox and The Wall Street Journal reported Saturday that O'Brien -- who relocated to L.A. last year to take over the Tonight Show -- may also be considering a jump to a rival network.

Still, Gaspin said Leno, O'Brien and Fallon "were incredibly gracious and professional" when told about the schedule switch.

Last Call with Carson Daly, which airs at 1:35 a.m. could be in jeopardy, but Daly will "be part of NBC regardless of what happens,"  Gaspin said. "We're fans of Carson. There could be some rejiggering."

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