(Left) Jimmy Kimmel. Photo: ABC/Jeff Lipsky. (Center) ‘Tonight Show’ host Jimmy Fallon. Photo: Todd Owyoung/NBC. (Right) Stephen Colbert from ‘The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.’ Photo: CBS.com.
When the writers’ strike began in May, it meant that all the Late Night talk shows had to shut down, since they employ Writers Guild of America staff to write monologues, questions for guests and skits for the hosts to appear in.
Plus, the hosts themselves are WGA members and would not cross picket lines to work.
Yet with the Writers and the AMPTP, which represents the studios sealing a successful deal, the WGA officially ended the strike at midnight today (Wednesday 27th September). And that means that the hosts of ‘The Late Show with Stephen Colbert’, ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live!’ ‘The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon’ and ‘Late Night with Seth Meyers’ will all be back on Monday.
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver is returning Sunday, and the hosts are wrapping up their podcast Strike Force Five. It takes a few days for their shows to ramp back up to production, book guests and other necessary work.
What was Strike Force 5?
‘Late Night with Seth Meyers’ host Seth Meyers. Photo: Lloyd Bishop/NBC.
During the strike, Oliver, Kimmel, Fallon, Colbert and Meyers created a podcast called ‘Strike Force 5’ that they hosted, with proceeds from paid subscriptions going to the crews who needed support while the different shows were shut down.
“Their mission complete, the founding members of Strike Force 5 will return to their network television shows this Monday 10/2 and one of them to premium cable on 10/1,” said the hosts in a statement.
They followed up with a typically humorous summation of the whole situation:
“Of course, in a greater sense, the Strike Force 5 will never end because Strike Force 5 is not a place, Strike Force 5 is not a people, Strike Force 5 is barely a podcast, nay Strike Force 5 is an idea. An idea five men could talk on top of each other for 12 episodes and maybe somebody would listen. As we say goodbye, we would like to thank all those somebodies, truly, you were the heroes. We were mostly the heroes, but you were in there, too. We want to thank the entire Strike Force 5 team, our wives, our special guests and apologize to Conan O’Brien, who agreed to do the pod, but Stephen forgot to send him any possible dates and the strike ended.”
Related Article: Writers Guild Makes Tentative Deal with Studios to End Strike
The Bill Maher issue
(L to R) Bill Maher and Andrew Yang
on ‘Real Time with Bill Maher.’ Photograph by Janet Van Ham/HBO.
Some of their fellow talk show hosts, the daytime likes of Drew Barrymore and ‘The Talk’ team had planned to come back before the strike ended but curtailed that idea after public backlash and comments from Guild members.
Bill Maher, host of HBO’s ‘Real Time with Bill Maher’ is usually something of an opinionated instigator and not known for going with the flow.
He announced via social media on September 13th that he was planning to bring his show back on September 22nd.
Here’s Maher’s original statement:
“‘Real Time’ is coming back, unfortunately, sans writers or writing. It has been five months, and it is time to bring people back to work. The writers have important issues that I sympathize with, and hope they are addressed to their satisfaction, but they are not the only people with issues, problems, and concerns.”
There was predictable backlash from those who knew he would be crossing strike lines to work on the show himself, and Maher later announced that he would be pressing pause on the plan to return.
He will now be back on Friday this week.
This was Maher’s announcement:
“My writers and Real Time are back! See you Friday Night!”
(L to R) Steve Bannon and Bill Maher on ‘Real Time with Bill Maher.’ Photograph by Janet Van Ham/HBO.
Movies Affected by the WGA and SAG-AFTRA Strike: