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October 25, 2014

WGA not happy at all with Leno

by Anna Johns, posted Jan 6th 2008 3:42PM
jay lenoJay Leno is in trouble with the WGA. When he returned to late night television on Wednesday, he told his audience that he wrote the jokes for his monologue and that he wasn't relying on "scabs" to do his writing. It was a proud proclamation on his part, but it turns out that he was still violating the rules of the WGA strike. As a member of the WGA, he's not allowed to write. The WGA has met with Leno and let him know he broke the rules, and now the guild is trying to determine whether Leno needs to be punished.

Other late night hosts like Conan O'Brien and Jimmy Kimmel returned without writers and obviously without any sort of scripts. Conan spent a good part of last week spinning his wedding ring on his desk. David Letterman and Craig Ferguson also returned last week, but they have writers because Worldwide Pants, which produces both shows, came to an agreement with the WGA.

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SadOldMan

Leno is actually much funnier since he came back. He seems re-invigorated. Dave's still in the same rut.

January 07 2008 at 8:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jim

Yes, Leno needs to be punished. The WGA should make him watch his own show.

January 07 2008 at 6:39 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Will

I wondered when I read that Leno said that (he wrote his own jokes) how he could do that when he is a member of the guild. And if he could do that, why be off the air for 2 months? But punish him, that's pretty laughable, what are they going to do to him, he's a multi-millionaire, I'd bet it's like a fine that a pro athleat gets, it's tiny compared to what he gets paid. I'd be interested to know what the "punishment' is.

January 07 2008 at 4:19 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Will's comment
Eugene

Take away his cars and make him drive a hyundai excel circa 1985.

January 07 2008 at 4:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
tvfan3241

lol, possibly punished for writing his own jokes... what is the wga, a union or a bloody cult!

January 06 2008 at 10:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jordan

Any one else think that Leno was better last week than he had been in awhile? I think the show is honestly better without the writers.

January 06 2008 at 7:39 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Karen

Isn't it going to be impossible to monitor web distribution if every company agrees to different terms? And how much content on the web is sanctioned by the production companies that put it there in the first place? Isn't most of it bootleg to start with?

January 06 2008 at 6:52 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Karen's comment
Vito

Official web distribution. If you don't think that's feasible, take a look at what The Daily Show did. It's entirely possible that in future, illegal uploading might be unnecessary for all but the most obscure content.

January 06 2008 at 6:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
RR

Thanks, yes it seems obvious now. I wonder why WWP didn't consider agreeing to the WGA demands earlier. If DL is the boss of WWP and considered the writers demands as fair, he could have made that deal 2 months ago.

January 06 2008 at 5:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to RR's comment
Brent McKee

The answer is that Dave offered to take the deal as soon as the WGA started offering interim agreements, something that wasn't available in the first month or six weeks of the strike.

January 06 2008 at 8:29 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Ryan

I support the writers, but I'm sure they are just pissed off than even with a writer-less Leno, it's still better than whatever Letterman and his writers could come up with.

January 06 2008 at 4:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
LC

"In a statement, NBC condemned the guild plans to investigate Leno. "The WGA agreement clearly permits Jay to create and perform his own monologue. The enforcement of strike rules against Jay in these circumstances would violate the federal labor laws."

I would like to actually see this agreement. It doesn't seem so cut and dry that he actually did anything wrong providing that he wrote all his own jokes.

January 06 2008 at 4:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to LC's comment
Vito

I believe the reason for why it doesn't fall under the typical perform-your-own-material protection is because he is credited on his show as a writer and receives residuals and benefits for that (paltry as they might be in comparison). I might be wrong about that.

January 06 2008 at 6:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
RR

I wish I understood what on earth kind of deal Letterman could have made. I mean, what can he offer the WGA that makes them say to him OK, your show(s) can come back with writers. Your writers can break the strike without a problem. What possible terms could be in that deal that makes the WGA accept it.

January 06 2008 at 4:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
4 replies to RR's comment

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