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October 4, 2015

Worldwide Pants continues to pay striking writers

by Paul Goebel, posted Nov 15th 2007 10:39AM

David LettermanEven though The Late Show and The Late Late Show are in reruns, the company that produces them, Worldwide Pants, is continuing to pay their staff. The announcement came from the offices of WWP and went on to say that the writers (Update: the entire staff is being paid) for both shows in New York and in Los Angeles will continue to earn a salary, at least through the end of the year.

Worldwide Pants is owned by David Letterman who, as a writer for his talk show is in a precarious position. As a member of the WGA, Letterman is forbidden to do any writing for the show but as an executive producer he is still involved in the day to day decisions regarding the show.

This gesture is an unusual one for a production company considering that they are under no obligation to pay striking writers and the company itself is not making money from CBS on either of it's shows since no new episodes are being produced.

It's clear that the decision comes from Letterman himself. While he enjoys portraying himself as a curmudgeonly narcissist, fans of David Letterman know him as not only a brilliant comedian but as a benevolent employer.

This news surely comes as an ironic shock to fans of Jay Leno who is often portrayed as the nicest guy on television and yet has shown no support for his writers outside of bringing them donuts while they walked the picket line. Since Leno has made no secret that he has never spent any of the money he has earned from hosting The Tonight Show you'd think he would be willing to help out the writers who do their best to make him appear funny instead of insisting of continuing to hoard his money like a miser.

Furthermore, this gesture makes Ellen DeGeneres look far worse than she could have ever imagined since she has continued to produce her show in a flagrant disregard for her writers.

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November 26 2007 at 3:00 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Apparently, the hard-blogger needs, um, a WRITER...David is doing the right thing. And for the skeptics, he IS World Wide Pants, so eventually, the money comes out of his pocket, for everyone. He pays everyone. Ellen, as much as I love her, has royally screwed up. And I find it hard to believe that Whoopi isn't a member of the Guild: I've seen her stand up and HBO specials. She doesn't write all of her stuff herself, or hasn't in the past. As for Jay, donuts just don't pay the rent. I don't know what the answer is; I only know decency when I see it. Thanks, Dave, and Jon and all of those who have tried to make a difficult time a little easier.

November 15 2007 at 7:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Michael Parkatti

This strike is affecting more than just traditional entertainment -- professional wrestling is now in shambles! I wonder if Vince McMahon will pay his writing staff?


November 15 2007 at 4:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Joel Keller

Folks, thanks for pointing out the spelling and punctuation issues, as well as alerting us to the fact that Dave is paying his entire staff. I edited the post for Paul to address these issues. Feel free to use the "Corrections" link above to report any other errors you see in this or any other TVS post.

November 15 2007 at 2:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Also, the first sentence is incomplete and makes no sense unless you've read and remembered the headline.


November 15 2007 at 2:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I was going to comment on the inaccuracies and flaws with this post, but everybody beat me to it. Now I'm just here posting like a jackass with nothing better to do. Regardless, I saw no reason to bring Leno or Ellen into the conversation. Ellen, especially, is in a completely different situation. Also as others have said, the staff is getting paid. I saw nothing saying the writers were getting paid. That's still extremely nice of them considering many people are being laid off right now since there is nothing for them to do right now.

November 15 2007 at 2:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Dave got his start as writer and hasn't forgotten his roots, which is why it only makes sense that he's still paying his writers, as well as the rest of his staff.

I won't take this time to trash anyone because he's able to do this out of the uniqueness of his ownership of World Wide Pants - he doesn't have to do this, but the fact that he is makes him that much more of a decent human being.

Who'd'a thunk that the man who once launched himself onto a velcro wall would become a role model?

November 15 2007 at 1:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Frank's right about Ellen's situation being quite different because of syndication...this article does a pretty good job of explaining why she's in a difficult situation:

November 15 2007 at 1:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I agree with Ken, as the grammatical errors are inexcuseable with today's advantage of word processing spell check. Do your homework Mr. Goebel!

November 15 2007 at 1:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Will Teullive

Major props to Letterman for his generosity. Don't hold your breath waiting for Leno to follow Dave's lead.

Will Teullive

November 15 2007 at 1:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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