“SNL” chief Lorne Michaels will remain exec producer of “Late Night” even as he takes on those sames duties for Fallon’s “Tonight Show.” “Late Night” vet Michael Shoemaker will remain with the show after the Meyers transition as a producer.
As soon as Fallon got the nod for the “Tonight Show” promotion, Meyers was seen as the logical choice of successor, though there had been speculation that NBC might be inclined to shake up the latenight boys’ club by tapping a femme host.
“We think Seth is one of the brightest, most insightful comedy writers and performers of his generation. His years at ‘SNL’s’ Weekend Update desk, not to mention being head writer of the show for many seasons, helped him hone a topical brand of comedy that is perfect for the ‘Late Night’ franchise,” said NBC Entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt, “On behalf of Steve Burke, Ted Harbert and Paul Telegdy, we couldn’t be happier that Seth and Jimmy Fallon will be continuing their careers at NBC after growing up in this network’s late night legacy.”
Meyers has spent the past 12 seasons on “SNL.” He’s been head writer for eight seasons and “Weekend Update” anchor for seven seasons. In recent years he’s shown his skills outside of the sketch arena with hosting gigs such as ESPN’s Espy Awards and the 2011 White House Correspondents Assn. dinner.
Michaels’ role in ushering Fallon’s successor gives him even more clout at the Peacock as he will oversee its latenight franchises with the exception of “Last Call with Carson Daly,” the half-hour yakker that follows “Late Night.”
“Since 1982, there have been three ‘Late Night’ hosts starting with David Letterman, and Seth couldn’t be in better company,” said Michaels.
Meyers segue to “Late Night” leaves two big holes to fill at “SNL.” NBC did not spell out a timetable for his departure but he’s expected to see it through the fall launch. Nor did the network announce a premiere date for his iteration of “Late Night.” Fallon is set to take the reins of “Tonight Show” on the heels of the Peacock’s winter Olympics coverage in February.
Said Meyers: “I only have to work for Lorne for five more years before I pay him back for the time I totaled his car,” said Meyers, adding: “12:30 on NBC has long been incredible real estate. I hope I can do it justice.”