Late night guest line-ups: June 1-5

With Jay Leno ending his 17-year run as host of The Tonight Show on Friday to huge numbers, Conan O'Brien officially takes over the reins this week. It should come as no surprise that we're huge Conan O'Brien fans here at, specifically me. The first in-person interview I ever conducted was with Late Night with Conan O'Brien writer Brian Stack (who, along with most of the old staff, has made the move to Los Angeles). I've been to 3 live tapings of the show, despite living half a continent away. And just today we posted an interview with Tonight Show blogger Aaron Bleyart.

This week's top 5 must-see guests are pretty heavy on The Tonight Show, but it's not just because I'm a huge fan of Conan and its his debut week. The booking agents for the show certainly went out and find some amazing guests for the show's freshman week.

  • Will Ferrell (Monday on Conan, Thursday on Stewart) - Will Ferrell appeared on the final Late Night three months ago, after making many appearances on the show dating back to his Saturday Night Live days. He's also made a few movies with new Tonight Show announcer (and former Late Night sidekick) Andy Richter. I think it's just a coincidence that Ferrell has a new movie coming out this week (Land of the Lost), because he'd be a great first guest for the show regardless. He'll also be hitting the other coast on Thursday to appear on The Daily Show.
  • Bill Cosby (Monday on Letterman) - If you don't want to watch Conan's first show, or have a PVR to watch them both (like I do), definitely check out David Letterman's counter-programming. The legendary Bill Cosby makes another appearance on The Late Show and will no doubt be hilarious. The man is comedy royalty, and for the comedy "traditionalists", it's pretty smart to put him on as lead guest the same night as Conan's first show.
  • Steve Martin/Paul Simon (Tuesday on Fallon) - They aren't one entity, of course, but what a classic line-up the young Late Night has on Tuesday! One of the funniest men in the world, Steve Martin, and a pretty funny guy (but also legendary singer/songwriter), Paul Simon, are both showing up. They've both been frequent Saturday Night Live performers over the years, so it's pretty cool that they're appearing together. Let's just hope Jimmy doesn't just giggle through their entire appearances!
  • Harland Williams (Tuesday on Carson) - Harland Williams is one of the strangest people in the world. Okay, I'm pretty sure it's just an act, but still -- you never know what you can get with Harland Williams on television. His stand-up is great, but when he's just being odd and weird on a talk show couch, he's his most unpredictable. If you like absurdity, you'll like this. Plus, Carson's new show set-up isn't too bad, either.
  • Tom Hanks (Tuesday on Conan) - Tom Hanks made many memorable appearances on Conan's old Late Night show, as he's always game for anything that can get a laugh. But he's also one of the biggest movie stars in the world, so it's not a bad guest for Conan's second show as host of The Tonight Show as he'll bring in some of those mainstream viewers who watch these shows more for well-known guests rather than ground-breaking comedy.

The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien (NBC)

  • Mo 6/1: Will Ferrell, Pearl Jam
  • Tu 6/2: Tom Hanks, Green Day
  • We 6/3: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Bradley Cooper, Sheryl Crow
  • Th 6/4: Gwyneth Paltrow, John Mayer Trio
  • Fr 6/5: Ryan Seacrest, Chickenfoot

The Late Show with David Letterman (CBS)

  • Mo 6/1: Bill Cosby, Paula Abdul
  • Tu 6/2: Jack Hanna, John Krasinski
  • We 6/3: Jessica Biel, Steve Earle
  • Th 6/4: Elvis Costello
  • Fr 6/5: Paris Hilton, Steven Wright

Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (NBC)

  • Mo 6/1: Anne Hathaway, Will Forte, Jon Favreau, Mario Batali
  • Tu 6/2: Steve Martin, Paul Simon, Vanessa Williams
  • We 6/3: Danny McBride, Dave Matthews Band
  • Th 6/4: Jessica Biel, Rachel Dratch, Jason Sudeikis, Doves
  • Fr 6/5: Bradley Cooper, Denise Richards, Mandy Moore

The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (CBS)

  • Mo 6/1: Mary Louise Parker, Guillermo del Toro, Tori Amos
  • Tu 6/2: Denis Leary, Diane Birch
  • We 6/3: Jeffrey Tambor, Gabrielle Anwar
  • Th 6/4: Elizabeth Perkins, Mark Burnett, Bernie Williams
  • Fr 6/5: Seann William Scott, Henry Cho

Jimmy Kimmell Live (ABC)

  • Mo 6/1: Ben Stiller, Shawn Johnson and Mark Ballas, No Doubt (Repeat)
  • Tu 6/2: Danny McBride, Nia Vardalos, Taking Back Sunday
  • We 6/3: Heather Graham, Lance Krall, Katie Melua
  • Th 6/4: Thomas Haden Church, Ed Helms, 311
  • Fr 6/5: Michael J. Fox, Chuck Wicks, Julianne Hough, Asher Roth (Repeat)

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Comedy Central, CTV)

  • Mo 6/1: Bob Woodruff
  • Tu 6/2: P.J. O'Rourke
  • We 6/3: Michael Lewis
  • Th 6/4: Will Ferrell

The Colbert Report (Comedy Central, CTV)

  • Mo 6/1: Sen. Byron Dorgan
  • Tu 6/2: Katty Kay
  • We 6/3: Eric Schlosser
  • Th 6/4: Dag Soderberg

Last Call with Carson Daly (NBC)

  • Mo 6/1: Troops at Fort Irwin
  • Tu 6/2: Harland Williams, Diane Birch
  • We 6/3: Jo Koy, Lissy Trullie

The Hour with George Stroumboulopoulos (CBC)

  • Mo 6/1: Ali Velshi, Lynn Johnson
  • Tu 6/2: Moby, Alan Bell
  • We 6/3: Perry Farrell
  • Th 6/4: Christopher Buckley, Randy Bachman
  • Fr 6/5: David Cronenberg, the Amazing Kreskin, Bradley Cooper

Tags: The Tonight Show, Late Night, David Letterman, Craig Ferguson, The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, Jimmy Kimmell, The Hour, Jimmy Fallon, Conan O'Brien

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Paul Little is the founder and Managing Editor of When not interviewing his favourite musicians and comedians, he can also be found putting on and promoting music and comedy events with The Purple Room in Winnipeg, or co-producing the live comedy game shows Pants on Fire and The Great Patio Showdown. (@comedygeek)

Original Comments Posted (1)

ariana says...

DOVES! Remind me to watch Fallon on Thursday.

Jun 2, 2009 1:29pm

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