Watch The Late Shift (1996)
Genre: Talk-Show Drama Comedy
Runtime: 95 min
Director: Betty Thomas
Stars: Kathy Bates John Michael Higgins Daniel Roebuck Bob Balaban Ed Begley Jr. Peter Jurasik Reni Santoni John Kapelos Steven Gilborn John Getz Lawrence Pressman Sandra Bernhard Treat Williams David Brisbin Michael Chieffo
Synopsis: HBO movie about the behind-the-scenes network politics responsible for the changes in late-night talk-show hosts, after the retirement of Johnny Carson from the Tonight Show on NBC. Jay Leno and David Letterman were both vying for the position, but Leno's tough manager Helen Kushnick got him the spot. In the wake of her 'stepping on the toes' of powerful network executives and 'playing hardball' tactics with guest bookings, she found herself being pushed out of her job as Tonight Show Executive Producer and Jay's manager. Letterman, devastated by his being passed over, brought in superagent Mike Ovitz to negotiate on his behalf, resulting in his move to CBS.