Conan O’Brien talked to his studio audience today about four-day trip to Cuba for an upcoming episode of his TBS late-night show called, appropriately, Conan In Cuba, and that “ridiculous white suit.”
“Yesterday, I returned from Cuba, and then today, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi arrived in Cuba. Which explains why today, the Cuban government asked America to, “Please stop sending us your ambiguously female celebrities,” O’Brien joked at the top of tonight’s taping.
“I had an amazing experience in Cuba, the people there are absolutely fantastic, but I do have to say it’s very nice to be back home in front of all you capitalist pigs,” he added.
O’Brien and a small crew flew to Havana late last week, and spent the weekend filming for his TBS late-night show’s March 4 episode, becoming the first American late-night show to film in Cuba since the U.S. embargo began in 1962. They flew back on President’s Day, but quietly, so as to make certain they could get out the footage they’d shot.
Jack Paar famously interviewed Fidel Castro for the Tonight Show in 1959, for which Paar got criticized in some circles. (Castro was a big “get” that year for obvious reasons, and also was interviewed by CBS’s Sunday Beltway show — and Ed Sullivan.)
The episode is being pitched as a rare glimpse into Cuban daily life though, as of Monday, the only photo the show had sent out from the trip showed Conan standing next to the obligatory vintage car, dressed very Alec Guiness-in-Our-Man-In-Havana.
In December, President Obama made news when he announced he would normalize relations with Cuba.
O’Brien’s show is known for its road trips, having previously filmed in Ireland, Finland, and Toronto as well as New York, Chicago, Dallas and Atlanta. His remotes are a signature thing, including last week when O’Brien and Steven Yuen visited a Korean spa, and that Lyft ride Conan took through Hollywood with Ice Cube and Kevin Hart that went viral late last year.
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