NBC is trying to squash rumors that Jay Leno will soon return to The Tonight Show stage.
According to various reports, the 10 p.m. time slot has been a failure for the comedian. These sources state his talk show will take a hiatus on February 1 and return in early March (after NBC airs the Olypics) - at 11:30 p.m.
What would this move mean for Conan O'Brien's future at the network? It's unclear. Ratings for his stint as host of The Tonight Show have been lower than expected.
With this rumor swirling, NBC has released the following statement, which appears to support Leno remaining in primetime, but doesn't guarantee it:
"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. 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."
Are you (somehow) on Team Jay or Team Conan?
** UPDATE: NBC Chairman Jeff Gaspin has now gone on record and said: “I can confirm, starting Feb. 12, The Jay Leno Show will no longer air at 10 p.m.