Writers Want Leno to Can the Jokes

Writing his own monologues violates strike rules, they say
By Marcia Greenwood,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 4, 2008 9:34 AM CST

(Newser) – Jay Leno is back on the air telling jokes, but striking writers want him to knock it off. Leno returned to TV—and the top of the ratings—Wednesday and yesterday with monologues he wrote. Writers say that violates strike rules and are trying to pressure him and NBC to scrap the stand-up bits, reports the New York Times. Leno, though, says he got permission from the guild and is holding firm.

"There must have been some kind of misunderstanding if Jay is saying that,” said a guild spokesman. Asked what will happen if Leno refuses to pull the plug on his own jokes, the spokesman responded: "We're not at that point yet, so I don't want to say." If Leno prevails, it could pave the way for other late-night hosts to do the same, including Jon Stewart, who returns Monday.