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Jay Leno's new NBC show means less Jay, more silly young comics

August 19, 2009 |  3:15 pm

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Jay Leno is still tinkering with the format behind his new 10 p.m. talk show that premieres next month. But viewers should get ready for one change: There'll probably be less Jay than on "The Tonight Show."

Leno told reporters during a press conference in Burbank today that "The Jay Leno Show" will still start with a monologue tied to the day's news, and he'll still have familiar segments like Jaywalking and weird headlines. But -- in lieu of the interviews that occupy most of "Tonight" and other late shows -- Leno will spend a lot of time highlighting taped pieces by younger comics such as D.L. Hughley, Liz Feldman and Mikey Day. It's an impresario-like function that Leno believes TV used to perform in the 1960s and '70s.

"I hope we can make some stars in this," Leno said. "I hope people become famous and get offered shows. If they replaced me with a guy we discovered, I mean, that would be great."

Early taped segments will include Feldman trying to teach seniors how to use Twitter and Hughley coming up with off-the-wall ideas to help rescue California from its financial woes.

"This is a way to use young comics in a new way," Leno said. "They essentially go out and they shoot the stand-up piece they're talking about." 

Viewers may notice less Jay in another way too: The 59-year-old host says he's kept off about 10 pounds he lost this summer. He said he'd even finished off a two-mile run before heading over to the NBC lot to meet reporters.

-- Scott Collins

Photo: Jason Merritt/Getty Images

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