‘The Arsenio Hall Show’ Canceled After One Season

The Arsenio Hall Show review

The Arsenio Hall Show” has stopped production, marking an abrupt end to the host’s efforts to restart his latenight franchise in syndication.

CBS Television Distribution had said that the show would return for a second season, but the latenight strip was facing significant downgrades from stations and the Eye determined that the show would not be financially viable. The show was in reruns this week and will not resume production. The show’s last original seg was May 21.

SEE ALSO: Arsenio Hall: CBS, Tribune Bet on Host for Latenight Syndie Show

CBS said in a statement: “Unfortunately, ‘The Arsenio Hall Show’ will not return for a second season; while there are many loyal fans of the show, the series did not grow its audience enough to continue. Arsenio is a tremendous talent and we’d like to thank him for all the hard work and energy he put into the show. We’d also like to thank Tribune and all our station group partners for their support of the show.”

Hall had sought to rekindle the success he had in the late 1980s and early ’90s with his syndie yakker. The revived show, a joint production of CBS and Tribune, started out with promise last September but could not maintain its early momentum and struggled with guest bookings. Original showrunner Neal Kendall was axed after one month into the show’s run and a permanent replacement was never set.

Hall and his manager/exec producer John Ferriter were in the process of recruiting a new showrunner team, new writers and making other changes for season two. But with station groups including the powerful Sinclair Broadcast Group threatening to downgrade the show’s time slot to well after midnight, CBS couldn’t justify the risk in spending money on a revamp.

Hall was away from Los Angeles Friday on a planned vacation and not available for comment. Ferriter emphasized that the host put all of his energies into delivering the best possible show. The struggle with bookings was perplexing to the “Arsenio Hall” team given that Hall’s ratings were often comparable to cable latenight shows such as TBS’ “Conan.”

“I’m really proud of our show, I’m proud of Arsenio and I’m proud that he got back on the air to do what he does so well,” Ferriter said. “My one regret was that we had many, many celebrities who told us they wanted to do the show but we couldn’t get their reps to book them.”

The return of Hall was part of an unprecedented shakeup in the latenight TV lineup during the past two years. At the time plans for Hall’s return were first announced in June 2012, ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” was still airing at midnight and Jay Leno was still firmly in control of “The Tonight Show.” Back in his heyday, Hall was a hip, urban-friendly alternative to Johnny Carson; this time around, he was one of many alternatives in latenight — though he was often competitive in the demo with other latenight shows.

“Arsenio Hall” staffers were floored by the news of the shutdown that was announced Friday afternoon at the show’s offices on the Sunset Bronson studio lot that is home to Tribune’s KTLA, which carried the show in L.A.

The news came as a shock because CBS and Tribune had previously committed to a second year of the show. Leno even made a special visit to the show to announce the season two pickup, his first TV appearance after exiting “The Tonight Show” in February.

In a statement, Hall said: “When I started this adventure with CTD and Tribune, we all knew it would be a challenge – I’m gratified for the year we’ve had and proud of the show we created. I’d like to thank everyone on my staff for rallying around me and striving to make the best show possible every night.”

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  1. Rich says:

    Glad he is OFF THE AIr : The show suck and so did he : They should have never even tried to revive it :

  2. Nv says:

    It’s a pity, his show was very popular back then.

    But this time it was tasteless, his jokes were lame, he keep complaining about not being listed, as one of the top night show host..

    Most of the shows material, was about sarcastic, racism, wich sometimes is funny, but using it all the time just get’s boring, & humorless.

  3. Jeffrey says:

    Great! The show wasn’t funny in the 80’s-90’s and the recent crap wasn’t any better.

  4. Tommy L Pate says:


  5. Arsenio and Conan needed better script writer’s.

  6. Paul Thompson says:

    I feel so badly for Arsenio Hall and his staff, who i thought produced a excellent alternative late night show.I’ll miss his brand of comedy.Thank you.

  7. George James says:

    The show never had any good guests. It was my favorite talk show in the 90’s he always had great guests. The show started off great in its first week but after that it was all downhill and that is why ratings went from good to poor.

  8. Beulah says:

    Bull##%!!! The Arsenio show was pulled by the powers that be, Those White. Supremacist who own the network because he was promoting up and coming talent of his own race and for his continued challenge to news anchor Brian Williams to appear on the show and answer for his lack of inclusion of the Arsenio show on a list of late night talk show host. Arsenio over reached his
    limitations set in place by the Networks!

  9. sb White says:

    Please bring the show back God please forgive all of these very grown adults. Where was the 15 yr olds mom while her while her child was at a playboy mansion?

  10. Michelle says:

    Bring Him Back

  11. chris g. says:

    I am very upset & disappointed That The Arsenio Hall show was cancelled even after Jay Leno made a special appearence to tell Arsenio that he was to be given a second season…I watched the show every night & it was a great show!! Please bring Arsenio back! !

  12. Psycho says:

    Just noticed the show was gone. No, Arsenio isn’t funny, but I was under the impression that being unfunny was expected of late night hosts. Letterman, Leno, Ferguson…all deliver ghastly, unfunny monologues every night. I thought Arsenio fit in quite well actually.

  13. Jerri says:

    Sad I was just looking to watch the other night been so preoccupied hate that his show not still on

  14. carl lindsay sr says:

    You know its amazing how much negativity and out right dislike that has manifests itself since Arsenio’s show has been cancelled. The sarcastic and degrading attitude’s that I have read that are moslty from non minority people, who praise people like carson, leno, to name a few and even steinfield. All these shows had the financial backing to stay on an entertain the same non minority class of people that like the type of boring dry non funny hummer that these shows had. And of course their ratings kept them on television. Now you get an upbeat modern style of late night talk show that arsenio had, not the norm that people were used to seeing, but something different with and open forum and a upbeat band and a different type of energy that generated the famous hand pump and woop, woop that certain people talked about so much because it was different, but the audience and fans loved it. He would go into his audience and interact with them, and even bring his guess into the audience. Then he would have guess on and introduce them to the viewing audience live and on television to get that exposure that other late night shows didn’t do.He was about entertainment and exposing new entertainers so they would be known, that’s what made him special and stand out more than the other talk shows. He tried to give a different variety of guess, to expose them for the talet that they had. It’s unfortunate that again he was deceived into thinking he had the backing of the network. He seemed to be very happy with his show and the direction he was going, I am a big fan of his show and watched it every night, the other shows were to predictable and boring.But with his show you were entertained

  15. Ro says:

    Sad, very sad and a much better show than the new tonight show! Its amazing how this country still gets away with giving decent blacks lip service and non decents ones get shot/murdered.

  16. Kimberly says:

    Wow they could of let it go on I beleave his ratings would of went up wow

  17. Mike says:

    I really enjoyed the original Arsenio show and was looking forward to his return to TV. I was disappointed, however. Not sure why. But, time has something to do with it.

  18. Brenda T. Thompson says:

    Arsenio Hall show added such variety to late night talk shows. It’s a shame that we don’t have more options! I am so sick and tired seeing guests recycled from show to show. I appreciated Arsenio’s sincerity, diversity and commitment to bringing people we might not otherwise see on television.

    I really hope some other station picks up the show…

  19. Yolanda stewart says:

    I was so glad Arsenio Hall was back doing late night television and is disappointed for its cancelation. The network didn’t have to canceled his show but make slight changes. PLEASE BRING ARSENIO HALL SHAOW BACK!!!

  20. Champ73 says:

    The cancellation was not racial at all, I am black and I liked the show for a little while until I stopped watching, I have to say that there were a couple of issues that definitely killed the show and prompted the stations to downgrade it for lack of revenues through advertisement.

    1) The jokes were mediocre at best. 2) The sidekicks were just awful. 3) He constantly talked about the women on The Real Housewives TV Shows (big turn off). 4) Some of the singers and rappers he had on the show sucked. 5) And I can forget that ghetto woman he had on the show periodically “Tiffany Haddish” she was just awful and painful to watch. I hope he gets picked up by another network, but he has a lot of changes he needs to do before that happens again, it’s not easy to get a Late Night Talk show and he blew it, period.

  21. Buddy says:

    The funny thing is some people are blaming CBS/Tribune for killing Arsenio Hall. The studio actually renewed. It’s the TV stations that downgraded the show, The poor time slots couldn’t make it work financially for CBS/Tribune. This sucks. I am hoping somebody will give Arsenio a 3rd chance. Maybe he could do a low key show that doesn’t cost as much. Too bad, CBS doesn’t give AH a chance on the Late, Late Show at 12:30AM.

  22. John n says:

    Arsenio was great and one of the only hosts really giving shine to a blend of artists and celebs in a laid-back format. I like how he gave a lot of shine to west coast artists. He had Kendrick Lamar and Tyrese on his show. What other late night shows are inviting greats like Snoop Dogg, Warren G, DJ Quik, Too Short, Kurupt, Schoolboy Q, Ice Cube. What other late night shows are going to have these west coast legends on?? I will miss Arsenio and I hope he comes back on network tv, maybe Fox will pick him up and jump into late night.

  23. Sandra A says:

    I am sadden by the cancellation of the Arsenio Hall show I looked forward to watching it every night.
    If there is someway you can bring back by all means do it!

    • Janet says:

      I’m not buying for an instant that Arsenio had low ratings. His Nielsen ratings were at 173% viewership when he came on. Conan, Ferguson, et.al. had what????(???) And when Conan’s ratings fell SOOOO low that they had to bring back Jay Leno – nobody cancelled Conan. I think those sociopathic “other” late night hosts made glaring complaints, and as always – THEY get catered to.

  24. Ferdinand Arroyo says:

    Sad to see he isn’t being allowed at least a final week of shows. A final chance to bow out for likely the final time.

  25. bobnelsonjr says:

    Who is Arnie Hall? What has he ever accomplished?

  26. tony says:

    Once again the heavy foot of the white man has the back neck of the brother down on the floor..A H was not the lily white sissy boy like Jimmin Fallon and they goofy white dude that comes after him…CBS is all white guys thinking black folk don.t watch tv after 11o clock at night..We supposed to be wearing a hoody and walking around scaring people..We don’t sit around watching letterman at all..Man makes millions playing grab the boobies with hes staff and all that money and wont go to the denist to fix that gap between is tooth..He eat corn on the cob and when hes threw there is one row of corn left on the cob…and leno and conan…big head boys..whats up with there heads..i know there mama had a c section…they look like they spent time as wack the moles..You head pops up and you bang down with a club.Somebody goona give AH A show one day and cbs going to learn that not every body name BIFFY and Buffy watch tv at night

    • bgruy says:

      your comment was more entertaining than anything arsenio did. maybe YOU should have a late night talk show? I’d tune in. wack a mole? brilliant!

    • Jenovo says:

      LOL. Best comment I’ve read in years. And the most entertaining part? Though likely written by an African American, it’s astoundingly racist. Good job. That’s a Rhodes scholar right there, folks.

    • Janet says:

      *You have to realize, Jonovo, that a LOT of Whites get on these boards, make inflammatory comments and pretend to be Black Folks – deliberately misspelling words, speaking in deliberately broken “Ebonics” and then sitting back watching the confusion fly. While a lot of what “tony” says may be ontarget – DON’T believe at every turn that this was African Americans making all these comments. Who knows, he COULD be. But I’m just saying a lot of Whites have been outed for being the ones behind these broken statement-type comments.

  27. August says:

    I guess it’s back to peddling Vegetable Juicers on late-nite infomercials for Arsenio….

  28. I would have to disagree with the previous statement. The issue was that he had issues booking big names to bring more interest to the show. It a very good show and very necessary for a demographic that despite their purchasing power still remain woefully underrepresented in this particular medium.

    • Jenovo says:

      Incorrect. No one wanted to be on his show because it was terrible/ Furthermore, unlike the 90s, African American artists and personalities now have dozens of outlets to promote themselves and their works – Arsenio is just not worth their time. If anything, being on his show in 2014 negatively impacts their exposure, and they smartly knew this.

  29. Mark Meyer says:

    Thank the Lord. He was passe about 10 years ago. Completely out of touch.

  30. Eric R. Fillmore says:

    Not surprising. Hall rode the coat tails of Eddie Murphy for years.

  31. 1peevedbob says:

    He got cancelled once before, so I’m wondering why he was brought back in the first place. I think he would get cancelled on BET.
    My original comment was going to be “Arsenio WHO?”

  32. Dinah Khollman says:

    Sorry to say his show was a disaster! Personally I am shocked he was back doing his old same routine
    Woof,woof,woof may have been good in the 80’s I never did think he was a good comedian or a host of a Late night show competing with Leno…THE GREATEST! Jimmy Kimmel,Very a Good,Jimmy Fallon,
    Overrated Show I don’t like,David Letterman,another will not be missed! If it had not been for Donald Trump,he would not have gotten his awful,disaster show back on the air!!Bye,Bye,Arsenio Hall,how you were allowed to stay on the air as long as you did,I will never know!!! Put Jay Leno,On!

    • Rodney Mann says:

      You are obviously too young to remember the true king of late night TV, Johnny Carson. Not of those you mention, including Leno, are in the same league, no make that universe as the great Carson.

      • Champ73 says:

        You do realize that all those people you mentioned above are all white, right? Do you see the problem?

  33. Since when do CBS shows have to be financially viable?

  34. Moe says:

    Great guy.. I love him

    I really believe that this show should have focus on locals. People who are trying to achieve or who have local programs, not those who have already capitalize. .

    Starving artist, the underdog. . I
    want to see more of what they have accomplished or what they are currently working on. .
    There are so many of these guys who work hard and does not get recognized..

    Airing such programs can give local communities. Local people a chance. .
    This my friends is what I will watch.

    For example. School Court tv
    Www schoolcourttv.com

    Check out the creativity on season 1, 2 and 3.

    Watch kids ages 10 thru 18 battle

  35. Team USA says:

    For cryin’ out loud, he was just unfunny, period—end of story. Still, it’s interesting to learn that his ratings were virtually comparable to Conan’s. So much for the “big wave” of national Coco hoopla after exiting NBC. Conan is the white Arsenio.

  36. SteveSurfs says:

    Wasn’t worth watching the first time he was on, and sure wasn’t worth watching the second time. Who would want to waste their money to give this joker a third try?

  37. Walter_White says:

    Not a black thing at all he was just unfunny and his interviews sucked simple!

  38. Ike Starrett says:

    I’d rather watch Eric Andre or W. Kamau Bell or Key and Peele or Reggie Watts- they represent the new generation of black-infused humor without hitting you over the head with their blackness all the time. Those guys are just plain funny- it’s not just always a black thing with them. They just bring the funny, period.

    Arsenio didn’t learn from his first debacle- that Farrakhan interview is what killed off his first show. He did not challenge the Nation of Islam leader when he made some questionable comments about race in America. The sponsors jumped ship in droves. The perception of his new show was that it was a black thing, and you can’t grow an audience if you point your show at only one segment of the population.

  39. Jim says:

    Nothing racial, nothing personal – it’s business. The show did not get ratings on the network side. That usually means the show is gone. I agree with others. The show was generally awkward and lacked any demo focus. Arsenio is one talented dude. He will find another gig.

  40. tony says:

    Yes and he scheduled a heavy black contingent of hollywood. Not saying that is bad but he definitely biased his show towards that sector..I also agree that his show was too serious compared to Fallon.

  41. Phyllis M. says:

    He’s well informed about all issues, foreign and domestic? These are qualifications for a talk show, he should have applied for a job at CNN. Talks shows are for fun and entertainment and he wasn’t either.

  42. Jay Santos says:

    There is no entertainer who begins to approach Arsenio. He’s extremely smart, with a Harvard education. He is tremendously well informed on all issues, foreign and domestic. He is usually right about everything and he’s the most likable guy I’ve ever seen. The only reason he is being fired is because he is an African-american. I see strong parallels with our President and the shameless way he is treated.

    • Janet says:

      Thank you, Jay Santos. Very rightly put!

    • Jenovo says:

      LOL. “The only reason he’s being fired is because he’s African American.” Too funny. 100% incorrect – but keep playing that race card if it makes you sleep better at night. He was a terrible host with poor ratings, and in 2014 african american/diverse guests had no reason to bother booking themselves on his show because he was basically irrelevant this day and age.

  43. David Ray says:

    My only question is, ‘How’d he ever get a second show?’

  44. Coffee Girl says:

    Are you remotely suggesting that the US is a white country??? Do you even realize who was here before white people got here. What racial arrogance.

  45. Tim says:

    You got to be kidding me. The writing Was really poor. He had no good guests

    • Janet says:

      ….Like Betty White? Like Ray Romano? Like Bishop T.D. Jakes; Bill Cosby…????

      • Art Estrada says:

        Wait! T.D. Jakes? He’s not in show business. Guest like him is one of the reasons his show failed. No one in most part of the Country doesn’t even know who this guy is nor do they even cared.

  46. Anthony Tal says:

    I’m sadden that more African American celebrities didst support Arensio.

    • Tim says:

      Why should someone go on a show just because the host has the Same skin color ? That makes no sense. The goal of a celebrity going on these shows is promotion. They go on shows that will promote their movies. Books ,ect. The best. Get good ratings and then you get better guests.

  47. Joe Smith says:

    It was a bit too Afro-centric.

    • Coffee Girl says:

      Too Afrocentric????? Never hear anybody say any of the dozen white one are too European. Folks just can’t stand to see too many black folks on TV.

  48. Any One says:

    That’s a shame really, maybe Oprah’s network will pick him up. Blacks need late night shows!

  49. Racklefratz says:

    OMG. Go in peace, my chile.

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