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Conan O’Brien Leaving Late-Night After 28 Years, Launching Variety Show

The end of an era. Conan O’Brien‘s late-night talk show, Conan, will end with its 10th season on TBS in June 2021. The host, 57, has been working in late-night television for 21 years.

“In 1993, Johnny Carson gave me the best advice of my career: ‘As soon as possible, get to a streaming platform,’” the comedian, who will continue hosting Conan Without Borders travel specials for TBS and is launching a new variety series at the HBO Max, said in a statement on Tuesday, November 17. “I’m thrilled that I get to continue doing whatever the hell it is I do on HBO Max, and I look forward to a free subscription!”

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Full Frontal With Samantha Bee, which was renewed for a fifth season last year, will be the only late-night news show on TBS after Conan wraps this summer.

HBO Max COO Casey Bloys added, “Conan’s unique brand of energetic, relatable, and at times, absurdist, comedy has charmed late-night audiences for nearly three decades. We can’t wait to see what he and the rest of Team Coco will dream up for this brand new, variety format each week.”

The writer and producer previously hosted Late Night With Conan O’Brien on NBC from 1993 to 2009. In 2010, he was tapped to take over The Tonight Show. However, after being on the air for seven months, the network chose to push The Tonight Show back to the 12:05 a.m. timeslot, and O’Brien left and brought his show to TBS.

In addition to the late-night show, he launched a podcast, “Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend,” in 2018, which he hosts and produces.

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“There are a couple of things about doing podcasts that are superior or more fun than doing a talk show,” he told TechCrunch Disrupt last month. “When I’m doing the traditional talk show, I’m limited. For years and years and years, when it was on network television, I had to take six- and seven-minute turns, which mean I’m having a conversation with you or I’m having a conversation with someone I’ve always dreamed of talking to, whether it’s Tom Hanks or Jim Carrey or Robin Williams. Then after six or seven minutes, there has to be a laugh and we’ll take a break and we’ll be right back. That’s not a natural conversational flow.”

He noted that it’s “really incredible” to be able to do interviews for over an hour and loves to not have to worry about his appearance. However, he was not sure if ever only do the podcast.

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“I think it’s a mistake to think of it as, will you stop doing the show, and only do the podcast? Or will you retire and then quietly work on your letters in a shack? I love to create things. I have a lot of energy. I love to try and make people laugh,” he shared. “If I’m making podcasts, it doesn’t prohibit me from also maybe do maybe doing something, it doesn’t have to necessarily be for Turner, it could be for anybody.”

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