John Oliver Interviews Former NSA Director In Sunday’s HBO Debut

By | Thursday April 24, 2014 @ 11:21am PDT

John Oliver Keith Alexander NSA InterviewJohn Oliver will interview Gen. Keith Alexander (Ret.) — former director of the National Security Agency and head of U.S. Cyber Command –  when he debuts his new HBO late-night topical comedy show Last Week Tonight. HBO says it’s Alexander’s first since retiring as NSA director. The news comes the week Oliver took the NBC package deal to promote the launch of his new HBO late-night show, stopping by The Tonight Show show to poke fun at Jimmy Fallon‘s interview style and talk about friends’ reaction to his final The Daily Show appearance, in which he wept. Read More »

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John Oliver Visits Jimmy Fallon, Matt Lauer To Promote HBO ‘Last Week Tonight’ Debut: Video

John Oliver took the NBC package deal to promote the launch of his new HBO late night show, Last Week Tonight this coming Sunday. Oliver stopped by Tonight show last night, where he made fun of Jimmy Fallon‘s interview style and talked about friends’ reaction to his final The Daily Show appearance:

Earlier this week, Oliver so deftly explained to Today show’s Matt Lauer why his satirical show would not bother to cover a report that had just been featured on Today, that Lauer barely noticed he’d been dinged: Read More »

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Comedy Central’s Late-Night: From Minor Leagues To Major Player & Innovator With Deep Bench Of Talent Competitors Vie For

Nellie Andreeva

For years in the 1990s, Comedy Central was considered nothing jonstewart-stephencolbert_indecision2008more than an incubator for late-night talent. Its first notable weeknight late-night show, Politically Incorrect With Bill Maher, originated there and ran for three years — from 1993-96 — before ABC snatched it to get into the late-night talk-show game. Maher’s successor at ABC, Jimmy Kimmel, also is a Comedy Central discovery, having gotten his start as host on the network’s Win Ben Stein Money and then The Man Show. Before Politically Incorrect left Comedy Central, it helped launch The Daily Show, which premiered behind PI at 11:30 PM before moving to the tentpole 11 PM slot. Back then, the Daily Show had Craig Kilborn as a host. In 1998, he was poached by CBS as a host of the Late Late Show. Sixteen years later, CBS once again is reaching out to Comedy Central’s Daily Show franchise to replenish its late-night ranks, this time drafting the former Daily Show regular and current host of spinoff The Colbert Report to succeed David Letterman on the Late Show.

Related: Stephen Colbert Named New ‘Late Show’ Host

comedycentral1A lot has changed over those 16 years. Since Jon Stewart replaced Kilborn at the helm of The Daily Show in January 1999, the show has risen to become a late-night leader. It became a top late-night choice for younger viewers and, with the addition of spinoff The Colbert Report in 2005 to form a 11 PM-midnight block, Comedy Central evolved from a late-night poaching ground to a force to be reckoned with. The two shows became pop culture phenomenons and strengthened their hold on the younger crowds by embracing the Internet and social media before most of their late-night competitors. They have enjoyed buzz as well as critical acclaim, with their Emmy dominance nothing short of staggering. The Daily Show won the best variety series category for a record 10 consecutive times before its streak was ended last year by The Colbert Report to give Comedy Central 11 consecutive victories. (It’s worth mentioning that it was the man Colbert is replacing, David Letterman, who ruled the top variety category before Comedy Central’s dynamic duo kicked off their dominant run with five consecutive trophies.) In the variety series writing category, The Daily Show and Colbert Report have won 10 of the past 11 years.

Related: CBS’ Late-Night Drama Not Over Despite Practically Perfect Stephen Colbert Hire

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HBO Unveils Promo For John Oliver’s New Topical Late-Night Weekly ‘Last Week Tonight’: Video

01_john oliver_2012-2HBO has unveiled its promo for Last Week Tonight With John Oliver, which unveils on April 27 (see below).  The new weekly satire current events show from the former The Daily Show With Jon Stewart correspondent (and stand-in host) will … Read More »

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HBO Sets Name & Date For John Oliver Debut

By | Wednesday February 12, 2014 @ 10:10am PST

John OliverLast Week Tonight With John Oliver will premiere on April 27, HBO announced today. The new weekly satire show from the former Daily Show With Jon Stewart correspondent and stand-in host will air at 11 PM.  Last Week Tonight will … Read More »

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TCA: John Oliver Touts Sarah Palin’s New Sportsman Channel Show

By | Thursday January 9, 2014 @ 6:28pm PST

John Oliver“Are you staying at the hotel tonight?” a TV critic asked John Oliver at the start of a Q&A for his new HBO comedy show.

“This is already a very creepy way to start the question,” Oliver interrupted during the session of the TCA Winter Press Tour 2014, being held at the Langham hotel in Pasadena.

Related: HBO’s ‘Looking’ Not “Just A Show For Gay People,” Says EP

“Sarah Palin is hosting breakfast,” the critic explained.

“WHAT?! Are you kidding? Well, now — I’m checking in!” Oliver enthused. “What breakfast?”

Sportsman Channel, he was informed. Palin’s come to promote her new reality series for the network.

TCADeadline__140109155905__140109183154“Good for her!” Oliver beamed. “She’s going to do to sports what she did to politics. … Believe me, there is a significant voice in my head now saying, ‘Check in, go to breakfast’!” he said giddily. “I think I’m on a flight tomorrow morning, but again, half of me has already canceled that flight,” he continued as one TV critic offered him his credentials so he could attend the Palin breakfast. “I’m also glad the TCA security is so high that passes are utterly transferable — especially since we are different races,” he said of the critic.

Related:
TCA: HBO Sets Season 4 Premiere Date For ‘Game Of Thrones’
TCA: HBO’s ‘Boardwalk Empire’ To End Run After Season 5

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Jon Stewart Surprises John Oliver With ‘The Daily Show’ Retrospective As He Heads To HBO: Video

By | Friday December 20, 2013 @ 11:22am PST

Jon Stewart had John Oliver in tears as he surprised him with his own retrospective, on his last day at The Daily Show. Oliver, who got rave the-daily-show-oliver-stewart-300reviews when he filled in for Stewart over the summer, will launch his own topical comedy talk show, telecast Sundays on HBO, premiering in 2014. During last night’s ambush retrospective, Oliver, who’d been with the Comedy Central late night program for more than seven years, was mostly speechless and fighting tears.

Last month, when HBO announced it had signed Oliver, he said, “I want to thank Comedy Central, and everyone at The Daily Show for the best seven and a half years of my life. But most of all, I’d like to thank Jon Stewart. He taught me everything I know. In fact, if I fail in the future, it’s entirely his fault.”

Watch after the jump — autoplay alert:
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International Emmys Laud ‘Les Revenants’, ‘Moone Boy’, Sean Bean, ‘5 Broken Cameras’

Les Revenants — an American remake of which is in development at A&E — was named best drama series of 2013 at the International Emmy Awards tonight, while Sean Bean won the best actor trophy for his role as a lit teacher with a cross-dressing alter ego in the British anthology Accused. Brazilian actress Fernanda Montenegro won best actress for her role in The Sweet Mother. The UK’s Moone Boy, about an Irish boy and his imaginary friend, took best comedy. Former The Daily Show correspondent (and newly named HBO show host) John Oliver hosted this year’s International Emmy ceremony, whose Founders Award went to J.J. Abrams, while the Directorate Award was presented to RTL Group Co-CEO Anke Schäferkordt.

Related: Sean Bean, France’s ‘The Returned’ Among International Emmy Noms

Les Revenants, the French TV series based on an obscure 2004 movie that sold only 32,000 tickets in France, was a hit on Canal Plus and sold around the world — including the UK, where it aired subtitled as The Returned this year to great interest, and on Sundance Channel. The drama is about a small town turned upside down when several local people who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, having not aged and unaware of their own fatality. As they attempt to resume their lives, strange phenomena and gruesome murders begin to occur. A second season is planned for Canal Plus. Read More »

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‘Daily Show’s John Oliver To Host Weekly Comedy Talk Show For HBO

By | Thursday November 14, 2013 @ 12:48pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

So much for any Daily Show succession plan talk. On the heels of his impressive stint as The Daily Show fill-in host this past summer, the program’s veteran correspondent John Oliver is jumping ship, landing his own topical comedy talk show on HBO and leaving the Emmy-winning Comedy Central program that made him a star. His last regular Daily Show appearance is expected to be on Dec. 19. The HBO show, which like the Daily Show will take a satirical look at the week in news, politics and current events, will debut in 2014, airing on Sunday nights. It joins HBO’s long-running Real Time With Bill Maher, which airs on Fridays. “We weren’t otherwise searching for another weekly talk show, but when we saw John Oliver handling host duties on The Daily Show, we knew that his singular perspective and distinct voice belonged on HBO,” said HBO’s Michael Lombardo. Added Oliver, “I’m incredibly excited to be joining HBO, especially as I presume this means I get free HBO now. I want to thank Comedy Central, and everyone at The Daily Show for the best seven and a half years of my life. But most of all, I’d like to thank Jon Stewart. He taught me everything I know. In fact, if I fail in the future, it’s entirely his fault.”

Related: John Oliver To Host International Emmy Awards Ceremony
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John Oliver To Host International Emmy Awards Ceremony

By | Thursday November 7, 2013 @ 11:31am PST

Once upon a time, John Oliver was looking to boost his profile and decided to spend quality time with TV critics, agreeing to host the Television Critics Association’s non-televised awards ceremony at the Beverly Hilton. In return, over the summer when he filled in for Jon Stewart as host Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, TV critics lavished him with praise, crowning him Stewart’s heir apparent – some of them even proclaimed him better than Stewart. Today, Oliver was named host of the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences’ 41st International Emmy Awards Gala, on November 25, at the Hilton in New York City. Oliver will preside over 1000 international media and entertainment executives as they convene to celebrate and dispense Emmys including the 2013 International Emmy Founders Award to and film/television creator/writer/director J.J. Abrams, and the 2013 International Emmy Directorate Award to  Anke Schäferkordt, Co-CEO of RTL Group and CEO of RTL Germany. Read More »

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Jon Stewart’s Return to ‘The Daily Show’ Snags 2M Viewers

By | Wednesday September 4, 2013 @ 12:16pm PDT

More than 2 million people caught Jon Stewart‘s return to The Daily Show last night after taking most of the summer off. That’s a 24% improvement over the Comedy Central show’s year-to-date average with Stewart-hosted episodes (1.63 million). It’s  Stewart’s second-best number this year. About 640,000 of last night’s crowd was aged 18-34 — the show’s target audience. That’s 22% better than Stewart episodes have averaged this year. In his final two weeks of original episodes before leaving to direct his first feature film Rosewater, Stewart averaged 1.415 million Daily Show viewers.

Some perspective: Daily Show’s biggest audience ever happened in October 2008 when presidential candidate Barack Obama was Stewart’s guest and the show clocked 3.6 million viewers, beating Michelle Obama’s appearance a few weeks earlier by about 600,000 viewers. It was the first time the show had ever cracked 3 mil. In ’10, Obama became the first sitting president to visit the show; 2.8 million tuned in at a time when the show was averaging 1.9 million.

Related: Jon Stewart Returns To ‘Daily Show’ A Darker Faux Newsman
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UPDATE: Jon Stewart Returns To ‘The Daily Show’ A Darker Faux Newsman: Video

By | Wednesday September 4, 2013 @ 4:37am PDT

UPDATED WITH VIDEO: “I’ve missed you so much — you don’t know what it’s like out there in the real world. Nobody applauds every stupid fucking thing you do!” Jon Stewart said in his return to The Daily Show last night. Viewers, meanwhile, may still be missing Stewart. The comic-turned-fake news show faux-anchor returned from Jordan, where he spent a good chunk of the summer directing his first feature film, showing telltale signs of a comic who has been through a life-changing experience and feels he should be doing something more serious.

Related: John Oliver Kept ‘Daily Show’ Anchor Chair Hot: Video

After an opening taped bit in which his summer substitute John Oliver discovered how changed Stewart is, and tried in vain to get back the old Jon — instead turning him into Moses, Freddie Mercury, Miley Cyrus at the VMAs, and Hitler — Stephen Colbert is brought in and, for script purposes, successfully exorcised Stewart, so The Daily Show could start. Stewart took his anchor chair and brought out Oliver to receive praise. Not that Oliver needs it. He got great reviews filling in for Stewart this summer, which must have been a comfort to Viacom Entertainment Group President Doug Herzog tonight, knowing there can be life after Stewart for The Daily Show. Not that Herzog’s making plans to replace Stewart — but it’s got to be nice to know The Daily Show won’t fall off a cliff should this new Stewart just back from Jordon decide it’s time to move on.

Related: John Oliver’s Farewell As Host Draws Lower Ratings: Video
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UPDATE: John Oliver’s Farewell As ‘Daily Show’ Host Draws Lower Ratings: VIDEO

By | Friday August 16, 2013 @ 2:11pm PDT

UPDATE, 2:11 PM: On his last night as interim host of Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, the guy TV critics have crowned Jon Stewart’s “heir apparent” and “just as effective … at 1/10th … Read More »

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John Oliver Kept ‘Daily Show’ Anchor Chair Hot During Jon Stewart’s Break: VIDEO

By | Wednesday August 14, 2013 @ 3:17pm PDT

The Daily Show fill-in host John Oliver bows out after tomorrow night. He’s been covering for Jon Stewart since June 10, while Stewart took time off to direct his first film, Rosewater. Oliver’s been getting great reviews for his guest gig. And though this past Monday he told PBS’ Charlie Rose, “I don’t think it’s going to change my life”, and that his goal had been only “not to destroy that machine” during his brief tenure, it’s been a game changer for Viacom Entertainment Group president Doug Herzog, whose empire includes Comedy Central, and who has learned from the experience that there can be life after Stewart. Not that anyone’s making plans to replace Stewart — but it’s got to be nice to know The Daily Show won’t fall off a cliff should the much-loved host who’s been the face of the franchise since January 1999 ever decide it’s time to move on.

Related: ‘Daily Show’ Sees Slight Rise As John Oliver Takes Over

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UPDATE: Jon Stewart Skype Appearance Gooses ‘Daily Show’ Ratings: Video

UPDATE, 3:33 PM: The Daily Show got a much-needed goose in its ratings with host Jon Stewart’s Skype appearance last night. More than 1.5 million tuned inthe show’s biggest crowd since June … Read More »

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Jon Stewart-Less ‘Daily Show’ Sees Slight Rise As John Oliver Takes Over

By | Tuesday June 11, 2013 @ 3:44pm PDT

John Oliver may have joked about how it was weird that he was in the host’s seat for the first time on The Daily Show last night but it was pretty … Read More »

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John Oliver Hosts ‘The Daily Show’ And Listens In On The NSA Scandal: Video

By | Tuesday June 11, 2013 @ 1:03am PDT

With longtime host Jon Stewart taking his first extended hiatus from The Daily Show, correspondent John Oliver took over the desk for the first Monday. The bespectacled Brit will host the venerable Comedy Central strip for eight weeks of original episodes while Stewart shoots his feature directing … Read More »

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John Oliver To Begin Summer Run As ‘Daily Show’ Guest Host On June 10

By | Wednesday May 1, 2013 @ 11:52am PDT

John Oliver begins his stint as guest host of The Daily Show With Jon Stewart on Monday, June 10 at 11 PM. Deadline broke the news in March that Stewart would be taking a 12-week hiatus … Read More »

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UPDATE: Jon Stewart Taking Summer ‘Daily Show’ Hiatus To Direct First Film And “Challenge” Himself, John Oliver To Sub

By | Tuesday March 5, 2013 @ 7:40pm PST
Mike Fleming

UPDATE: After I broke the news, Jon Stewart told the media his feelings about going from television to movies. ”I am a television person who is accustomed to having a thought at 10 AM and having it out there at 6:30 PM … Read More »

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