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Wednesday, April 7, 2010 as of 11:14 AM ET

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  • Jay Leno's show not canceled, NBC says

    leno

    NBC has repsonded to a report on the entertainment website FTVLive.com that said Jay Leno’s prime-time show on NBC was on the verge of cancellation.

    “Jay Leno is one of the most compelling entertainers in the world today. As we have said all along, Jay’s show has performed exactly as we anticipated on the network,” an NBC rep said in a statement issued Thursday. “It has, however, presented some issues for our affiliates. Both Jay and the show are committed to working closely with them to find ways to improve the performance.”

    “The Jay Leno Show” has been losing viewers since its debut, as have the local news programs that follow it in several major markets.

    One of the silver linings proferred by NBC during the show’s ratings slide was that, while they knew Leno would have tough going in the fall when the new dramas it was up against were in full swing, he would beat the much more expensive dramas once they were in reruns.

    That has not always happened, as Leno has lost against reruns of “CSI: Miami.”

    Leno also told Broadcast & Cable magazine in November that he regretted his move to prime time.

    “Would I have preferred to stay at 11:30?” Leno mused. “Yeah, sure.”

    Leno went further, comparing hosting the “Tonight Show” for 17 years to winning the prestigious America’s Cup yacht race, adding the rejoinder:

    “Do I enjoy the battle [of making the new show work]? Yes, I get a certain amount of satisfaction from pounding my head against the wall.”

    Later, when asked by B&C if he would take back the “Tonight Show” if offered, Leno seemed unaware that the job had been filled:

    “If it were offered to me, would I take it? If that’s what they wanted to do, sure. That would be fine if they wanted to.”

    Story developing…

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