Longtime “Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson” staffer Michael Naidus has been tapped to be the gabfest’s day-to-day showrunner.
Naidus will be No. 2 to Peter Lassally, the latenight legend (“Tonight Show,” “Late Night With David Letterman”) who exec produces “Late Late Show.”
Naidus has already been running “Late Late Show” on the floor, Lassally said. Promotion reflects what he’s been doing there for some time.
“I make the overall decisions, while he’s great at doing the minute-to-minute stuff,” Lassally said. “He is a natural as a latenight producer. He has an intuitive sense of the broadcasting audience, he provides clear-minded judgment and strategic advice, and he has mastered every aspect of the production of this show.”
Naidus has been with “Late Late Show” for more than a decade, starting off as its publicist — under original host Tom Snyder — before moving over to the production side in 2000 when Craig Kilborn was host. He most recently was coordinating producer.
Lassally said Naidus and Ferguson — who took over hosting duties in January 2005 — have developed a strong relationship and comfort level in putting together “Late Late Show.”
“I couldn’t be more pleased for Michael,” Ferguson said. “His years of Machiavellian sneakiness have finally paid off.”
Naidus’ promotion comes as “Late Late Show” has hit ratings benchmarks, besting “Late Night With Conan O’Brien” one week last month among total viewers.
Worldwide Pants prexy/CEO Rob Burnett credited Naidus with playing “a key role in Craig’s success with ‘The Late Late Show.’ ”
Prior to CBS, Naidus was a publicist for the Museum of TV and Radio and the League of American Theaters. He also spent a decade as a print journalist.