The recent NBC late night debacle seems to be scaring others away from anything similar. Craig Ferguson has never really relished being called a late night talk show host, but now he seems even more determined than ever to keep his distance.
Ferguson has hosted The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson since 2005. His is the third Late Late Show program to lead out of CBS’ Late Show with David Letterman. The Late Late Show with Tom Snyder lasted for four years and The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn lasted for five. In a month or so, Ferguson’s show will surpass Kilborn’s number of original episodes.
In light of what happened at NBC, Ferguson was asked if he would consider moving up to the 11:35pm time on CBS when Letterman retires. Ferguson refuses to even consider it. Even back in 2007, he didn’t enjoy the fame that came along with the late night chatfest, saying, “I just don’t know if I like being that visible.”
Nearly three years later, he seems to feel even more strongly about making a move up. He says, “As I watched that, whatever that was, unfold, I realized that I am not part of this — I am not part of the late-night clubhouse… Don’t ever rope me in as a late-night talk show host. I don’t want to be one.”
When Letterman retires, Ferguson has no intention of taking his place. “I neither care nor have any ambition about that,” he says.
Ferguson feels that it would be a mistake to try to take his unique show and move it into the Letterman spot. He cites the recent Conan O’Brien debacle as a good example that CBS should learn from.
He adds, “I do a show. It comes on late at night on TV. And if that means I’m a late-night talk show host, then I guess I am, but in every other regard I resign my commission, I don’t care for it.”
What do you think? Do you think Ferguson would be a good replacement for Letterman? How should CBS plan to replace Letterman?