TBS has decided to go after a late-night audience, ordering a new talk show from comedian and actor George Lopez.
The cable network announced on Tuesday (March 24) that the currently unnamed series will premiere in November on TBS and will air Mondays through Thursdays at 11 p.m.
“If change can come to the White House, then change can come to late night,” Lopez declares in the net’s release. “Yes I can!”
TBS promises a different sort of late-night format, with an outdoor party atmosphere and a high-energy crowd to go with the usual celebrity guests, musical performances and comedy acts.
“George Lopez is a special talent, with an everyman appeal that makes him uniquely positioned to be the next great late-night host,” says Michael Wright, executive vice president, head of programming for TBS, TNT and Turner Classic Movies (TCM). “George and TBS are going to change the late-night television landscape and bring a brand-new energy to the talk-show genre by giving it a street-party atmosphere. We”re excited to see this show come to life.”
Lopez and Jim Paratore (“The Ellen DeGeneres Show”) will executive produce the series, which comes from 2.2 Productions, paraMedia Inc. and Telepictures Productions, in association with Warner Horizon Television.
“George will bring a fresh voice to late-night talk,” Paratore says. “He”s done it all, from standup to television to movies. He’s a proven writer, producer and performer with the kind of broad appeal that will have real impact and speak to an audience largely underserved in late night.”
This will be Lopez’s first regular TV stint since “George Lopez” ended its six-season run on HBO. Playing on Nick at Nite, “George Lopez” remains one of the syndicated landscape’s Top Five comedies.
It goes largely unmentioned, but heavily implied, in TBS’ press release, but Lopez will be a high profile Latino comic entering a glutted late-night marketplace which, come next November, will be even more dominated by white men than ever before. The high profile late-night spots on the networks will be occupied by David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon and Craig Ferguson, while Jay Leno will already be several months into his NBC primetime talk show experiment.
“George Lopez is one of the most talented, popular and successful comedic performers today, and we are thrilled to partner with him and with TBS on a nightly talk-variety show,” says Hilary Estey McLoughlin, president of Telepictures Productions. “He has an extraordinary ability to authentically connect with a diverse audience and will bring a really different point of view that will be a game-changer in late night.”