Category: Conan O'Brien

Late Night: 'Chunky' Mindy Kaling thinks she's Bill Clinton's type

Mindy Kaling says she thinks she's Bill Clinton's type on "Conan."When author and "The Office" star Mindy Kaling was asked to appear on "Today," she was surprised to discover that she'd be taping the segment with former President Bill Clinton.

Kaling was told that she'd be appearing alongside another author to recommend a few books for holiday gifts. As she told Conan O'Brien on Thursday night, she didn't expect to be paired with a dignitary like Clinton. "My most exciting person was like Michael Crichton," she said. (Surely that would have been a bigger surprise; Crichton died in 2008.)

Making matters worse, Clinton's book recommendations -- James Joyce, Marcus Aurelius, the Bible -- were uniformly serious. "Mine was like a photo book with Lady Gaga photos in it and Gwyneth Paltrow's cookbook," Kaling lamented.

Kaling was intimidated, but unlike many of her friends, she at least doesn't harbor a crush on the famously charismatic leader. "He could, like, be on a coin someday. ... It's like weird to think of him as cute," she explained.

If anything, Kaling suspected Clinton might have a thing for her. As she sat next to him, a thought occurred to her:  "I'm, like, 'Oh, I'm kind of Bill Clinton's type.' I was thinking like Monica Lewinsky, like, if he was going to throw away a marriage, I was, like, I think ... I have a good shot at this."

Asked to elaborate, Kaling said, "I'm kind of peppy and psyched and, like, I'm a little chunky." (Chunky? We beg to differ.)

Further evidence that Clinton might have a thing for Kaling? After their segment finished, Clinton stayed on the show to discuss the situation in North Korea. Kaling left, assuming "they probably don't care what I think about North Korea."

When she got back to her hotel, Kaling's inbox was flooded with emails. Clinton wanted to say goodbye and was wondering where she'd disappeared to. 

Perhaps she's on to something?

 

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— Meredith Blake 
Twitter.com/MeredithBlake

Photo: "The Office" star and writer Mindy Kaling. Credit: Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles Times

Late Night: Lucky 'Conan' staffer gets Jon Hamm for Christmas

If you've ever participated in an office Secret Santa exchange, chances are you received a scented candle or some decorative fridge magnets -- hardly the stuff dreams are made of. But on Thursday night, Conan O'Brien gave one of his staffers a truly priceless present: "Mad Men" star Jon Hamm. 

It all began a few weeks back when "Conan" staffers got their Secret Santa assignments. O'Brien usually doesn't participate in the office gift exchange because, as he explained, "I give the gift of employment." But this year, O'Brien changed his mind and singled out lucky Ashley Olivia, "Conan" talent coordinator,as the beneficiary of his largesse. 

Unsure what to get for Olivia, O'Brien conducted a little research by rummaging through her desk. When he discovered a GQ cover of a smoldering Jon Hamm pinned to her cubicle wall, he knew just what to do. 

Watch O'Brien make one staffer very happy in the clip below, but try not to get too jealous. 

 

 

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-- Meredith Blake 
Twitter.com/MeredithBlake

Late Night: Conan honors Hanukkah with 'Human Centipede' menorah

Conanobrien11story
Tuesday marked the first day of Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of lights. To honor the holiday, Conan O'Brien began an unconventional new Hanukkah tradition on his show Tuesday night, one that, while extremely memorable, is unlikely to catch on with the masses: the lighting of a "Human Centipede" menorah.

Even for those unfamiliar with "Human Centipede," an exceedingly disgusting Dutch horror film, the joke was pretty hard to miss. As the band played some boisterous klezmer music, a human menorah of 9 semi-attached people crawled out onto the stage. Each was clad in a silver bodysuit with a single, oversized candle attached to their back.

"Happy first night of Hanukkah everybody," O'Brien said, lighting one of the enormous bulbs.

It makes the Tebow mockery on 'SNL' look pretty tame in comparison, doesn't it? 

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-- Meredith Blake 
Twitter.com/MeredithBlake

Photo: Conan O'Brien. Credit: Kevin Wolf / Associated Press.

Showtime to spin more 'Web Therapy' with Lisa Kudrow

Showtime has ordered a second season of "Web Therapy," the comedy starring Lisa Kudrow as a self-centered and self-serving psychotherapist who treats patients for three minutes via webcam
Showtime has ordered a second season of "Web Therapy," the comedy starring Lisa Kudrow as a self-centered and self-serving psychotherapist who treats patients for three minutes via webcam.

Meryl Streep, Conan O'Brien and Minnie Driver are among the celebrities scheduled to appear on the series, which is scheduled to return next year.

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-- Greg Braxton

Photo: Lisa Kudrow. Credit: Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times

Late Night: Even Rick Perry is laughing at Rick Perry

Rick Perry

It was the brain fart heard 'round the world.

In Wednesday night's Republican debate, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, his campaign in jeopardy after a string of lackluster debate performances, committed a gaffe of epic proportions.

Asked by debate moderator John Harwood which three federal agencies he'd eliminate if he were president, Perry said he'd do away with the Departments of Education and Commerce, but he drew a blank on the third. After unsuccessfully grasping for an answer for almost a full minute, he eventually admitted he couldn't remember. "Oops!" he said, in something of an understatement.

Given just how excruciating Perry's blunder was, Thursday's late-night pile-on was perhaps inevitable.

The field day began on "The Daily Show," where Jon Stewart devoted two segments to Perry's cringe-worthy performance. His overarching conclusion: With the blunder, Perry had effectively sealed Mitt Romney's fate as the Republican nominee. "You didn't want Romney? Too bad. You are now stuck," he said.

Stewart spent some time poking fun of the other candidates. He criticized Herman Cain for derisively referring to Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi as "Princess Nancy," and he described Newt Gingrich as the "Pillsbury Doughboy's angrier, know-it-all brother."

 

Then Stewart launched into a gleeful, slightly meta riff on Perry's giant flub. "Many Republican faithful thought Perry would be the answer to their prayer. Turns out, he was the answer to ours," he said. "A comedian can spend his whole life digging through the comedy mines for soundbites he can use to sustain his family. Sometimes a fella can lose hope. And then, Rick Perry gives you 53 seconds that can change a man's life."

Stewart struggled to isolate his favorite moment. Though he liked the part where "Perry looks like he's going to take a stroke to get out of the whole thing," and also appreciated when Ron Paul tried to throw Perry a lifeline, but eventually decided that Perry's nonchalant "Oops!" was, for him, the real highlight.

"That is not the four-letter word I would have gone with. Like it's a juicebox," Stewart said. "Oh, my God, my chance to be president of the United States. Oops!"

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No doubt aware that he'd be the butt of many a joke on Thursday night, Perry attempted to beat everyone else to the punch(line). He stopped by "The Late Show" to deliver the night's top 10 list, "Top 10 Rick Perry Excuses." Perry managed to get a few laughs. For example: Reason No. 6 -- "You try concentrating with Mitt Romney smiling at you. That is one handsome dude." But the effort may not have been enough to salvage his image.

 

Other noteworthy Perry ridicule from Thursday night: "Conan" broadcast a spoof campaign ad in which the absent-minded governor forgot his wife's name, while Perry "fan" Stephen Colbert insisted that the "Oops!" moment made Perry look human. "That's something Mitt Romney would die for. I'm sorry, power down and restart for."

Hey, at least Perry had a little company.

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-- Meredith Blake

twitter.com/MeredithBlake

Photo: Rick Perry. Credit: Andrew Harrer / Associated Press.

Late Night: Julie Bowen impersonates costar Sofia Vergara

Julie Bowen and Sofia Vergara

Fresh off her triumphant impersonation of a pelican on "The Tonight Show," "Modern Family" star Julie Bowen once again showed off her skills as a mimic on Tuesday night's "Conan." This time, she did a spot-on impression of her costar, Sofia Vergara.

Bowen disagreed with Conan O'Brien, who suggested that Vergara seems indistinguishable from the character she plays on the show. "You're hanging out with Sofia and she's like"-- cue a perfect imitation of Vergara's thick, nasal Colombian accent -- " 'I cannot do this, why do we have to do this?' Or whatever it is we she says she can't do, and she can do anything."

Among the many things that Vergara can do, according to Bowen: Ride big horses, juggle flaming chainsaws.

"The word 'action,' she is magic," Bowen claimed. "She's a born performer."

Looks like Vergara's not the only one.

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-- Meredith Blake

twitter.com/MeredithBlake

Photo: Julie Bowen, left, and Sofia Vergara, together at the Emmy Awards Sept. 18 in Los Angeles. Credit: Frazer Harrison / Getty Images.

Late Night: Conan O'Brien officiates gay wedding on his show

ConanStory
This week Conan O'Brien returned to his home turf, New York City, to host his TBS talk show from the Beacon Theatre. O'Brien capped off the week by doing something that, for now at least, he can do in New York but not California: He officiated a gay wedding.

On Thursday night O'Brien's longtime costume designer Scott Cronick married his partner David Gorshein. While Gorshein waited underneath the chuppah, Cronick walked down the aisle accompanied by his favorite celebrity, Andy Cohen of Bravo.

Onstage, the couple exchanged heartfelt vows. "Anyone in the world would be happy to wear one of your designs, but no one is possibly happier than I am to wear your ring," Gorshein said.

"I have only one vow for you. I vow to fill your every day with so much love. Cameras or no cameras, I am here today and I am yours forever," Cronick promised his partner.

After the men stepped on two glasses (one for each groom), O'Brien declared, "By the power invested in me by the state of New York and the Universal Life Church, I now pronounce you husband and husband. You can kiss the groom."

After they kissed, the newlyweds rode off into the sunset with some help from "Ted Turner," a recurring character on the show.

Watch the ceremony below, but make sure you've got some tissues handy.

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Late Night: Tyra Banks teaches Conan how to smize

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-- Meredith Blake
Twitter.com/MeredithBlake

Photo: Conan O'Brien. Credit: Kevin Wolf / Associated Press.

Late Night: Conan O'Brien pays surprise visit to Jimmy Fallon

JimmyconanStory
Wednesday night, Jimmy Fallon was minding his own business when, out of nowhere (or maybe just the green room) Conan O'Brien waltzed onto the set of studio 6B.

"What are you doing here?" Fallon asked.

O'Brien explained that he was in New York and wanted to check out his old studio. "Hey Max, hair looks amazing, man," he said, mistaking Roots drummer Questlove for his former bandleader, Max Weinberg.

"You were here for 16 years. Then what happened?" Fallon asked O'Brien.

"Don't you worry about that, you're a young guy. It all worked out fine." O'Brien cackled maniacally. But enough with the chit-chat: O'Brien was there on a mission.  "I left something here, something important to me," he said, rummaging through the cushions on Fallon's couch. "I think I'm going to need it again."

To find out just what it is that O'Brien left behind, watch the clip below. (Hint: The prop master at "Conan" better stock up on cigars.)

 

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-- Meredith Blake
Twitter.com/MeredithBlake

Photo: Jimmy Fallon, left, and Conan O'Brien. Credit: NBC and Paul Drinkwater / NBC.

Late Night: Conan caught looking at Nicole Scherzinger's cleavage

Nicole Scherzinger stopped by "Conan" on Monday night to plug her much-hyped new reality series, "The X Factor."

Dressed in a skintight leopard-print dress, Scherzinger dutifully told O'Brien about how she was introduced to fellow "X Factor" judge, Simon Powell. As fascinating as her story was, O'Brien's attention began to wander ... to Scherzinger's prominently displayed cleavage.

The brave Pussycat Doll would not let this injustice stand. "Focus, Conan," she said, gesturing away from her bust and toward her face.

The audience erupted in laughter, but sidekick Andy Richter opted to stick up for his boss."'That is so unfair!" he protested.

O'Brien also defended himself against the allegations of leering. "I'm sorry ... let's be real here for a second. You didn't think I was going to look down there?" he asked. Always one to ham it up around beautiful women, O'Brien spun his head around wildly and zoomed in for a closer look, eventually falling out of his chair.

"My God, I just threw my neck out," he said.

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-- Meredith Blake
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Late Night: Tyra Banks teaches Conan how to 'smize'

Tyra Banks teaches Conan O'Brien how to 'smize,' or smile with your eyes

For all you aspiring Top Models out there, here's some good news: You don't need a Harvard degree to know how to "smize."

Wednesday night, Tyra Banks delivered this egalitarian message on "Conan," where she taught host Conan O'Brien her signature move, the "smize." (For those of you who have never been sucked into the vortex of an "America's Next Top Model" marathon on Sunday afternoon, "smizing" is smiling with your eyes.) 

"Think of something that makes you happy but not enough to make you smile with your lips," she began. "What is that item?"

"Well, just being with you," O'Brien replied.

"OK, put me inside...," Tyra demanded.

"What's that?" he asked. "... This is really weird."

After Trya demonstrated the smize -- while chanting her mantra, "I'm selling the magazine cover. ...I'm getting what I want ... because I am smizing" -- O'Brien gave it a shot.

The results were more scary than sultry. As Andy Richter put it, "It looked more like a 'Who farted?' kind of face."

After the lesson was over, Banks -- who's clearly taking this whole thing way, way too far -- explained the mythological origins of the smize. That's when things really did get weird. 

"A smize comes in the world's waterways in Modelland. And if a girl finds one of these, it increases her chance of getting into Modelland, which is the land that creates supermodels that have superpowers, they're called 'intoxibellas,'" she said.

Sensing O'Brien's skepticism, she continued, "I know it sounds crazy, 'cause it's crazy fantasy adventure, so shut up. It's crazy, and it's supposed to be crazy."

Has Tyra lost her marbles? Judge for yourself. (The smizing begins around the five-minute mark.)

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--Meredith Blake
Twitter.com/MeredithBlake

Photo: Model and businesswoman Tyra Banks and late night host Conan O'Brien. Credits: Christopher Polk / Getty Images; Art Streiber / TBS

Late Night: Paul Rudd, Conan O'Brien and forbidden facial hair

Paul Rudd and Conan O'Brien

Paul Rudd: So funny.

During the actor's appearance on "Conan" Wednesday night, he and Conan O'Brien discussed everything from Rudd's uneasy affection for croissants and Porta-Potties to his brief (but documented) career as a tuxedo-jacket-and-shorts-wearing bar mitzvah deejay to the bushy beard he grew for his new film, "My Idiot Brother," in which he plays the title role.

After the film wrapped, Rudd shaved off the beard in stages, which he then photographed.

"When you shave a beard, you kind of have to go piecemeal," Rudd explained. "So you go with the sideburns then to the mustache and then you finally end with the Hitler … cause you can't really go anywhere after that. It's like wiping the last crumb away from a cookie."

However, as O'Brien pointed out, that's not really a look you can stick with for long.

"You can't," Rudd agreed, noting, "Isn't it weird? He ruined a look."

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-- Amy Reiter

Photo: Paul Rudd, left, and Conan O'Brien. Credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez /Getty Images and Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times.

Late Night: James Franco's unsexy sex tape [Video]

Kim Kardashian, Paris Hilton, Pamela Anderson and ... James Franco?  That's right, folks: The famously multi-tasking actor, currently starring in "Rise of the Planet of the Apes," is but the latest celebrity to star in a sex tape. Just don't expect his raunchy home movie to get scooped up by Vivid Video anytime soon.

As he explained on Tuesday night's "Conan," the sex tape began like so many do: As a bit of youthful experimentation. "When I was young, it's not like I went down to Van Nuys and tried to break into the porn industry. I got a video camera and my girlfriend and I decided to film ourselves."

So does this mean that the actor/artist/writer/filmmaker/grad student/model will be adding "adult film star" to his already lengthy resume? Not likely.

"[We] watched it back and said 'Yeah, well, let's never watch that again,'" he recalled.

So what does Ron Jeremy have that, um, James Franco doesn't?

"Those people in the pornos, they are great performers," he said, invoking a somewhat unfortunate metaphor involving his grandmother -- one that sent Conan O'Brien running into the fake blue waves behind him.

"Just like my grandma can feel feelings and cry in her life if she's sad, doesn't mean that she's going to be a great actor," he explained. "Same thing with actors in pornography."

Duly noted.

 

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--Meredith Blake
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