Conan O'Brien turns up the heat on NBC

conan_obrien_nbc.gi.top.jpgConan O'Brien is negotiating his exit from NBC.By Ben Rooney, staff reporter


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Conan O'Brien took his NBC bosses to task Tuesday and suggested that this could be his last week hosting "The Tonight Show" as negotiations over his reported $40 million agreement to leave the network appear to have stalled.

"Hi, I'm Conan O'Brien, and I'm just three days away from the biggest drinking binge in history," the comedian said during the opening monologue of Tuesday night's broadcast.

O'Brien has been at odds with NBC since the network tried to push "The Tonight Show," which he has hosted since June, to a later time slot. The dispute erupted into a weeks-long controversy that has galvanized fans of the show and roiled the entertainment industry.

"Yesterday there were rallies for me in cities across the country, including Chicago," O'Brien said. "You can tell things are bad when even Cubs fans feel sorry for you."

The comments came amid reports that O'Brien is close to signing a $40 million deal with NBC to walk away from "The Tonight Show." The agreement would bar O'Brien from criticizing NBC, the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.

O'Brien acknowledged the reports in his monologue, but proceeded to insult NBC in both English and Spanish.

"Some papers are reporting that I'm legally prohibited from saying anything bad about NBC," he said. "But nobody said anything about speaking in Spanish."

"NBC esta manejado por hijos de cabras imbeciles que comen dinero y evacuan problemas. (NBC is run by brainless sons of goats who eat money and crap trouble.)"

In another colorful jab at the network, O'Brien said "NBC is headed downhill faster than a fat guy chasing a runaway cheese-wheel."

O'Brien also referred to reports that the negotiations with NBC would strip him of his intellectual property rights to certain characters he created while host of "Late Night."

"Isn't it great to live in a country where a cigar-smoking dog puppet and a bear that masturbates are considered intellectual property?'" the comedian asked rhetorically.

The dispute stems from NBC's abrupt decision to cancel "The Jay Leno Show," which had received lukewarm ratings after only three months on the air. The move would have resulted in Leno hosting a new, half-hour show at 11:35 p.m. ET, followed by "Tonight" with O'Brien at 12:05 a.m.

O'Brien rejected the change and said in a Jan. 12 letter addressed to "People of Earth" that moving the show back would "seriously damage what I consider to be the greatest franchise in the history of broadcasting." To top of page

Frontline troops push for solar energy
The U.S. Marines are testing renewable energy technologies like solar to reduce costs and casualties associated with fossil fuels. Play
25 Best Places to find rich singles
Looking for Mr. or Ms. Moneybags? Hunt down the perfect mate in these wealthy cities, which are brimming with unattached professionals. More
Fun festivals: Twins to mustard to pirates!
You'll see double in Twinsburg, Ohio, and Ketchup lovers should beware in Middleton, WI. Here's some of the best and strangest town festivals. Play
Overnight Avg Rate Latest Change Last Week
30 yr fixed4.36%4.24%
15 yr fixed3.39%3.26%
5/1 ARM3.36%3.27%
30 yr refi4.34%4.22%
15 yr refi3.38%3.24%
Rate data provided
by Bankrate.com
View rates in your area
 
Find personalized rates:
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 16,408.54 -16.31 -0.10%
Nasdaq 4,095.52 9.29 0.23%
S&P 500 1,864.85 2.54 0.14%
Treasuries 2.72 0.08 3.19%
Data as of 3:11pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 16.15 0.00 0.00%
Facebook Inc 58.94 0.00 0.00%
General Electric Co 26.56 0.00 0.00%
Cisco Systems Inc 23.21 0.00 0.00%
Micron Technology In... 23.91 0.00 0.00%
Data as of Apr 17
Sponsors

Sections

General Mills has scrapped a controversial change to its fine print that some read as eliminating customers' right to sue the company. More

Obamacare sign ups hit 8 million, though final enrollment remains to be seen. More

Office for iPad move is a symbolic victory for Nadella's Microsoft, but the company is still weighed down by many of the same old issues. More

Schwinn, Trek and Cannondale are all iconic American bicycle brands. But none of them are made in the United States. More

As Detroit moves closer to reaching a bankruptcy deal, retired civilian workers are poised to be left worse off than firemen and police officers. More

Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer LIBOR Warning: Neither BBA Enterprises Limited, nor the BBA LIBOR Contributor Banks, nor Reuters, can be held liable for any irregularity or inaccuracy of BBA LIBOR. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.