Jimmy Fallon May Take Over TONIGHT SHOW When Leno's Contract Expires in 2014

Jimmy Fallon May Take Over TONIGHT SHOW When Leno's Contract Expires in 2014

The New York Daily News has announced that NBC executives are seriously considering late-night comedian Jimmy Fallon as Jay Leno's replacement when THE TONIGHT SHOW host's contract expires in 2014.

A source, reportedly high up in the network, explains that they're looking to break into the younger demographic - and they believe Fallon may just be their guy to do that.

TONIGHT SHOW squabbles have come to be an expectation in recent years: in 2009, Leno was forced out of his TONIGHT SHOW gig, and replaced with Conan O'Brien. Leno was given his own primetime show, but when it proved to be a flop in the ratings, NBC pulled the plug, and then replaced O'Brien with Leno - and Leno once again became the host of THE TONIGHT SHOW. TBS then quickly scooped up O'Brien, giving him his own late-night show.

Both THE TONIGHT SHOW and LATE NIGHT WITH Jimmy Fallon continue to bring the ratings for NBC, however. Season to date for the 2012-13 season, "Tonight" has stretched its leads versus one year ago over CBS's "Late Show" in viewers 18-34, 18-49 and 25-54 plus total viewers. In viewers 18-49, "Tonight" has established a margin over "Late Show" of 11 percent (1.026 million vs. 924,000), eliminating last year's "Late Show" advantage of 3 percent. Jay has also generated a 25-54 advantage this season of 9 percent (1.313 million vs. 1.206 million) after trailing by 1 percent at this point last year, stretched his 18-34 lead to 18 percent (347,000 vs. 295,000), up from last year's 10 percent, and increased his total-viewer margin to 12 percent (3.456 million vs. 3.085 million), up from last year's 11 percent.

Jimmy Fallon has established a 15 percent lead over "Late Late Show" this season in viewers 18-49 (664,000 vs. 579,000), up from 10 percent at this point last season, and in viewers 18-34, Jimmy's lead over "Late Late Show" this season is 42 percent (286,000 vs. 201,000), up from a 38 percent margin at this point last season.