Los Angeles Mayor to CBS: Move the ‘Late Show’ to L.A.

Eric Garcetti

After David Letterman announced his plans to retire, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Thursday fired off a letter to CBS’s Les Moonves, urging him to locate his successor’s show in Los Angeles.

PHOTOS: Who Will Replace David Letterman at CBS?

“As a longtime fan, I was saddened to hear of David Letterman’s retirement. But as Mayor of Los Angeles, I am excited for the opportunity to encourage you to bring CBS’ next late night show to our city — the entertainment capital of the world,” Garcetti wrote.

“I have made the entertainment industry a key priority for my administration. It’s a critical component to our city’s economy and identity,” he added. “I created the Mayor’s Office of Motion Picture and Television Production, and under the leadership of Ken Ziffren, we are aggressively seeking to encourage more production here in Los Angeles by cutting red tape, lending proactive assistance, and by furthering public policy to compete with the financial incentives offered by other states.”

SEE ALSO: Letterman to Retire From ‘Late Night’ in 2015

The Los Angeles region lost “The Tonight Show” after Jay Leno’s replacement, Jimmy Fallon, decided to relocate the show from Burbank to New York after 40 years in Southern California.

In 2013, as NBC was mulling a successor to Leno, New York Gov, Andrew Cuomo inserted language into his state budget that seemed tailor to win back “The Tonight Show.” The 30% credit was for a show that shoots in front of a studio audience of at least 200 people, had filmed at least five years elsewhere, and had at least $30 million in production costs.

Whether California can match that is another question. The state’s current tax incentives do not apply to studio audience shows like “Late Show,” and proposed legislation to expand the program does not include any such provisions, either, although it does extend the credit to all one-hour dramas and mega-budgeted movies. And such an expansion would not start until 2017. Letterman is expected to exit some time next year.

Some other kind of legislative proposal could be pursued in Sacramento, of course, but another lure could be to make the case that with “The Tonight Show” gone, any new entrant could have better access to stars and others who call L.A. home.

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 28

Leave a Reply


Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. renworb says:

    Speaking as someone who has been adversely affected by the mass exodus of production jobs from LA, I have to say…….. I LOVE THIS MAYOR!;…. no matter what happens with “The Late Show”!
    He’s really trying to do something and it goes far beyond this letter. Thanks Eric G. I hope you remain in office for at least another 30 years!!

  2. DC says:

    Enough talk, now make it happen.

  3. David Powell says:

    I love LA – Go for it!

  4. Midwesterner says:

    Moving the show to LA is a great idea, even though the Mayor uses “I” way too much.

  5. Bob White says:

    Move it to zany LA. Better than smarmy NYC.

  6. Nanny Mo says:

    This is so dumb it’s embarrassing. Thanks Mayor, now all of the Entertainment Industries problems have been fixed.

  7. Ken Gregory says:

    Better Idea…..cancel the damn show altogether….Hated Letterman….show was BOOOoooooring!

  8. Zeb says:

    Adam Corolla.

  9. Andrew says:

    Yah time for Letterman to leave….way overdue. Looks like a tired old man – cant watch him, not even funny.

  10. Liz says:

    This nonsense of better access to stars is weak for obvious reasons. The Late Show is a part of New York. Therefore, it should remain in New York.

  11. The perfect home for a Los Angeles based “Late Show” would be in one of the Historic Movie Palaces on Broadway in Downtown Los Angeles! We have the largest concentration of Movie Palaces in the nation, right here in the heart of the City. There are a handful of beautiful theaters that would work perfectly. The growing population in DTLA who can walk to the theatre would be a built-in audience, with plenty of parking and nearby Metro stops for everyone else. The Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation stands ready to assist in efforts to bring these theatres back to life, and a popular live TV variety show could be a great solution!

  12. M Gerdes says:

    Downtown LA has many great movie palaces that would be perfect for a show like this to move into. Sorry NO you win some and you lose some.

  13. JoeBlow says:

    Stick a fork in it. The circus is over. Play reruns of Dynasty.

  14. Camilla says:

    I’m just glad to see the never has been leaving , now I can turn the tv on at night without a fright of seeing his ugly mug.

  15. Sharon Hodges says:

    I quit watching late nite shows. I have the weather channel on.

  16. Rico says:

    Letterman is that angry old man at the end of the block who yells at children for walking on his lawn.

    • Josh says:

      That is such an outdated and narrow view of him. It’s so easy to throw out a missive like this. Broad and simplistic. He has mellowed tremendously from his earlier days, but even then he was not angry in this cartoonish way you’ve pigeonholed him, he was brilliantly sardonic and masterfully quick witted. For those unable to distill this and understand the difficulty of doing what he did night in, night out, at the level he did it… well, you missed out. Because he was the Carson of his generation, but with an Ernie Kovacs twist. Irreverent and sharp, edgy and inventive. Always finding comedy and mining it out of nothing. Creating it on the fly with an array of guests. And with that innate Midwestern sensibility that could cut through miles of Hollywood b.s. like a combine through a field of wheat. But you know what? I would enjoy him goofing on kids who walked on his lawn because he’d do it hilariously, calling them “spineless weasels” and maybe even tossing watermelons off his roof in their direction. He will be missed.

      • Rico says:

        Seriously? Letterman has become more vitriolic over the years. At some point, dripping sarcasm gets old.

  17. Sue Few says:

    Move the show to L.A.; everyone is tanned, feels good, and easy networking…..

  18. Rayzor Ray says:

    Move show to louisiana and I’ll host it. We have the best tax incentives and brand new studios.

  19. EQ says:

    This tax incentive is just a band aid, they created this problem, they got complacent, they got arrogant and here’s the real kicker. Runaway production is the reason why LA even became the city that it was, due to Edison’s greed and the relatively primitive filming equipment of the era forced them across the country to the west coast with the year around sunny weather, the beautiful people and the clean sparkling beaches but nowadays the only thing they have is sunny weather.

    It’s his duty I understand but what about the other industries that have fled LA and California for greener pastures what’s being done to bring those back? Regardless things are not going to back to the way they use to be. Movies can be anywhere and everywhere LA is hackneyed, audiences want more exotic locations.

  20. Dyan Devere says:

    Yes… Please bring it to LA! It was awful to lose Jay… But even worse to have it leave beautiful downtown Burbank!

  21. Mark Gage says:

    I have watched Letterman since Tom Snyder left the Tomorrow show,
    And I think that it is only tit for tat that the cbs show switch coasts if the tonight show did.

  22. Robin says:

    No if they continue with late show it has to stay in new york.

  23. Susan Kitchen says:

    Good job, Sir!

  24. Sorry Mr. Mayor but the Late Night is a NY Show. It will not work in CA. It belongs in NY my friend.

  25. Claudia Cagan says:


More Biz News from Variety