Jay Leno got candid with Joy Behar when she stopped by The Tonight Show recently. On her video blog for CNN’s HLN, she went behind the scenes and snagged an interview with the host who spoke out about the late night shuffle (and scuffle) with Conan O’Brien.
“Do you feel upset about Conan? Do you feel bad about Conan?” Behar asked Jay.
“Conan got screwed, I got screwed,” Leno responded. “I mean this is TV. The reason show business pays a lot of money is so when you get screwed you’ve got something left over.
“If you’re a nurse or a cop, and you get screwed out of your pension, you’re screwed out of your pension. In TV at least you walk away with some money. Conan was treated terribly, and I was treated terribly.”
Despite the drama surrounding Leno’s return to his original late-night slot, Leno is optimistic about a future when all the hosts can get back to a level playing field.
“I think Conan will come back and he’ll be strong,” he added. “We’ll all compete against each other. It should be me against Letterman, against Conan, against Kimmel and then you see who wins.”
Joy chimed in to point out that “Kimmel was a little bit of a turncoat.” Kimmel had appeared on Leno’s show only to slam him about the controversy surrounding NBC’s decision to reinstate Leno to the 11:35 pm time slot which had been passed on to Conan.
“All comics are friends,” Leno explained. “When you get onstage your job is to blow the other guy off the stage. I get it. That’s the way it works.”
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