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Late-Night Talk Shows Shut Down As Writers Guild Strikes

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


Late-night comedy shows have been forced to halt studio production as early as Tuesday after Hollywood studios failed to reach a new contract with the Writers Guild of America.

Now, thousands of unionized TV writers are on strike after their demands for more money from television studios and streamers were not met.

Popular late-night hosts such as Jimmy Kimmel, Jimmy Fallon, Stephen Colbert, and Seth Meyers will be off the air until their show’s writers return to work.

Shows that air daily, including much of the late-night talk show lineup, will either air re-runs or will be forced to conduct a show without the help of their writers.

“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” and “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” will not air new episodes beginning Tuesday.

“The Writers Guild of America authorized the strike Monday night after negotiations with the studios and networks failed to produce an agreement. It will mark the first time Hollywood writers have walked off the job since the 2007-2008 strike, which lasted three months and brought the industry to a virtual standstill,” Breitbart reported.

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“Hollywood writers, who could start picketing studios as early as Tuesday, are demanding more generous compensation as the streaming revolution continues to take over the industry. The guild has argued that the shorter seasons favored by streaming services — with most shows having ten or fewer episodes per season — have been detrimental to writers, who must find work on multiple shows to make ends meet,” the outlet added.

The Daily Wire’s Ben Shapiro took to Twitter to celebrate the news by joking that this is the only strike he has ever supported.

“This is the first time I can remember supporting a strike. In fact, I hope the strike continues forever,” Shapiro wrote.

Speaking to Deadline, Seth Meyers said he supported the writers and stood with them during the strike.

“I love writing. I love writing for TV. I love writing this show. I love that we get to come in with an idea for what we want to do every day and we get to work on it all afternoon and then I have the pleasure of coming out here,” he said.

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The NBC host added, “No one is entitled to a job in show business. But for those people who have a job, they are entitled to fair compensation. They are entitled to make a living. I think it’s a very reasonable demand that’s being set out by the guild. And I support those demands.”

Fox News host Greg Gutfeld’s late-night comedy show could see an even bigger surge in the ratings during the strike.

Gutfeld continues to be the most dominant force in cable news as a co-host of both “The Five” and also his late-night show “Gutfeld!”

The popular host also just announced a new book, titled, “The King of Late Night,” which will be released July 25, and details how Gutfeld “destroyed the mainstream late-night landscape of heavyweights and became the host of the #1 late night show in all of television.”

On Wednesday night, “The Five” was the most-watched show on all of cable news with a whopping 2.62 million total views. In the same 5 PM ET timeslot, CNN’s “Situation Room” brought in a dismal 698,000 total viewers, and Newsmax’s “Frontline” had 282,000.

A separate report also notes how Gutfeld’s late-night show has brought in historic viewership for Fox News.

“The show replaced news program Fox News @ Night in April 2021, and has made double-digit gains on Fox since, with a 44 percent boost in total viewers and a 25 percent gain in the key 25-54 age demographic. Since its debut, Gutfeld! has averaged 1.9 million total viewers and 332,000 in the key demo. That audience has only grown from the debut: its first episode brought in about 1.7 million viewers total and 318,000 demo viewers — a strong showing that topped all of cable news at 11 p.m.,” Mediaite reported.

As of now, Gutfeld appears to be the undisputed top host at Fox News in terms of viewership.

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