Rival Networks Block ‘Leno’ Appearances

By Andrew Gauthier 

The Los Angeles Times

Despite a new prime-time perch and a larger audience, NBC comedian Jay Leno is fishing for guests from a substantially smaller pool of talent.

Rival networks ABC and CBS are discouraging their stars from appearing on the prime-time talk show. They are determined not to let Leno’s 10 p.m. program undercut viewership of their costly dramas when they are trying to build audiences at the start of the TV season.

The boycott highlights an unintended consequence of NBC’s decision to move the veteran late-night comedian into prime time: making it harder to book some TV stars whose appearances could boost Leno’s ratings.

Leno did not face a similar snub when he was hosting “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno,” at 11:35 p.m. More…