UPDATE: Here’s a statement on Conan O’Brien’s behalf: “In the end, Conan was appreciative of the steps NBC made to take care of his staff and crew and decided to supplement the severance they were getting out of his own pocket. Now he just wants to get back on the air as quickly as possible.”
PREVIOUS: “Conan is independently paying a large amount to the staff and crew to supplement what NBC is giving them,” an insider tells me. That’s how the standoff which I’d been reporting for days between O’Brien and NBC was finally broken, allowing this statement to be made jointly by NBC and The ex-Tonight Show host:
NBC and Conan O’Brien have reached a resolution of the issues surrounding O’Brien’s contract to host “The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien.
Under terms of an agreement that was signed earlier today, NBC and O’Brien will settle their contractual obligations and the network will release O’Brien from his contract, freeing him to pursue other opportunities after September 1, 2010.
O’Brien will make his final appearance as host of “The Tonight Show” on January 22.
NBC immediately confirmed officially Leno’s Tonight Show do-over at 11:35 PM beginning March 1st. He hosted the Franchise previously May 1992-May 2009:
“We’re pleased that Jay is returning to host the franchise that he helmed brilliantly and successfully for many years,” said Gaspin. “He is an enormous talent, a consummate professional and one of the hardest-working performers on television.” to host the franchise that he helmed brilliantly and successfully for many years,” said Gaspin. “He is an enormous talent, a consummate professional and one of the hardest-working performers on television.”