Latenight host looks to expose new viewers to his humor
Jimmy Fallon is ready to host this year’s Primetime Emmy Awards. If anything, he’s too ready.
Fallon and his writing team have come up with countless bits — from pretaped pieces to live stand-up routines — that now await approval from Emmycast producer Don Mischer.
“We’ve written too much already,” Fallon says. “We submitted 10 pieces to Don, who told us, ‘Great, but we do need to give out some awards.’ So we’re overready.”
Fallon doesn’t want to give away too much so far, but many of Fallon’s writers — the brains behind popular “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” features like its “Glee” parody (“6-Bee”), “Lost” parody (“Late”) and its riff on Robert Pattinson (“Bothered”) — are on board as well and will be flying to L.A. for the Emmys. Fallon’s exec producer, Mike Shoemaker, is also making the trip.
Fallon calls it a field trip for his New York-based scribes and notes that many of his writers could use a little sun to boot.
“This is a good opportunity,” Fallon says of the hosting gig. “We’re going to (have) much higher ratings than at 12:30 at night. We’ll give people a little dose of what our show is like, and hopefully gain from the exposure.”
At the same time, Fallon says he’s very aware that he’ll be performing for a much broader — and perhaps older — crowd than the usual latenight insomnia viewers.
“We are keeping that in mind when doing bits,” he says. “I want everyone to laugh. We’ll have laughs for every generation. I guarantee at least one laugh.”
Fallon’s no stranger to hosting or to live TV, of course. Besides his “Late Night” gig, Fallon anchored “Weekend Update” on “Saturday Night Live” for years and has hosted past MTV Awards.
“It’s a hard job. It’s like hosting a party, except that millions of people are watching, but I’m ready,” he says. “It’s a good opportunity for me to say ‘thank you’ to the fans of TV. Without them, I wouldn’t have a job.”
Priority one on the Emmycast, of course, is handing out the night’s whopping 28 awards.
“You’ve got to keep it light, keep it respectful and keep it moving fast,” Fallon said. “I know enough from watching from home.”
Fallon promises not to be an absentee host like those award show emcees who practically disappear after the opening monologue. Meanwhile, backstage he’ll be hosting even as the show is going on, conducting interviews and doing other bits via a live backstage webstream.
Fallon has a tough act to follow: Last year’s host, Neil Patrick Harris, earned high marks for his hosting gig. But the “Late Night” star says he’s up to the challenge, and he could also benefit from the buzz surrounding several new shows up for awards, such as “Glee” and “Modern Family.”
There’s also the chance of a Conan O’Brien win for his brief “Tonight Show” tenure, which would “make for good TV,” Fallon notes, and the end of legendary series such as “Lost” and “24.”
“It was such a great year for TV,” Fallon says. “This is going to be fun for the crowd.”