Pop Minute

Home    Photos    Videos    What's on TV Tonight

Jay Leno On 'Awkward' Joan Rivers Ban, 'Good Friend' Robin Williams

Jay Leno says he didn't invite Joan Rivers on 'The Tonight Show' out of respect for Johnny Carson but things quickly got awkward.

"I didn't want to do it while Johnny was alive out of respect for Johnny," Leno told Access Hollywood. "I don't think he wanted to see her on the show and that's why we didn't do it."

Rivers first broke out during a guest appearance on 'The Tonight Show' with Johnny Carson. But Rivers' friendship with Carson came to an end in 1986, when she accepted Fox's offer to host her own late-night program. The two never spoke again.

"After Johnny passed, it got a little awkward by that point," Leno admitted. "Joan was sort of going on and on about me, and I thought, 'Let's let the ground lie fallow for a while and see what happens,' but she always kind of kept it going."

"And I like Joan. I mean that was the first autograph I ever got was Joan Rivers. I'm a comedian, I went to see her at the Chateau De Ville in Framingham and we were friends, and by then it just got to be awkward and we just never did it."

Leno also remembered good friend Robin Williams.

"Robin was a good friend of mine," Leno recounted. "I was there when Robin auditioned at The Improv."

"I always liked Robin. I love Robin. He was a good comic. Never trashed other comedians. Never got involved in any trash talking, that kind of nonsense. He was very supportive, always helped out young performers and homeless people."

"He was a really decent, decent guy who obviously had a lot of demons. I mean, he fought that fight every day, but you only have to lose that fight once."

"You can fight every day and win but if you lose once, that was the sad part," he said.

Jay Leno will host a primetime series, tentatively titled Jay Leno's Garage, about cars on CNBC beginning in 2015.

October 16, 2014 |

Related Posts
  Jimmy Kimmel's Baby Boy Helped End Feud With Leno: 'Jay and I Have Made Peace'
  Jay Leno Tags In to Help Jimmy Fallon Tell Monologue Jokes in Orlando
  Jay Leno Tags In For Monologue Jokes About Billy Bush On 'Tonight Show'
  Jay Leno Returns To 'Tonight Show' With Political Monologue Jokes
  Jay Leno Tags In For Fallon With Biting Hillary Clinton Jokes In Monologue
  Jay Leno Takes Over From Fallon To Deliver 'Tonight Show' Monologue
  Jay Leno Says Bill Cosby Accusers Face Unfair Double Standard
  Jay Leno Talks About Political Correctness With Meyers On 'Late Night'
  Jay Leno Can't Understand Why People Aren't Believing Women Accusing Cosby
  Melissa Rivers: Kathy Griffin 'Sh-t All Over My Mother's Legacy'
  Melissa Rivers Miffed Leno Didn't Talk To Her After Joan Rivers' Death
  Melissa Rivers Files Lawsuit In Mother Joan Rivers' Death
  Kathy Griffin Offered Joan Rivers' Seat On 'Fashion Police'
  'Fashion Police' To Continue Despite Joan Rivers' Death
  Joan Rivers' Doctor Took Selfie With Unconscious Comedian Before Death
  Hugh Jackman Says Joan Rivers Wanted Him To Sing At Her Funeral
  Biopsy That Led To Joan Rivers' Death Should've Only Been Done In Hospital
  Joan Rivers Remembered At Star-Studded Funeral In New York
  Pierce Brosnan On Working with Robin Williams on 'Mrs. Doubtfire'
  Robin Williams' Widow: There Was A War Going On In His Brain
  Fan Does Twenty Spot-On Robin Williams Impressions In Compilation
  Robin Williams' Autopsy Finds No Illegal Drugs Or Alcohol
  Robin Williams In 'A Merry Friggin Christmas' Trailer
  Billy Crystal and Jimmy Fallon Share Robin Williams Stories
  Ethan Hawke Says He Knew Robin Williams Was In 'Tremendous' Amount of Pain
  Billy Crystal Remembers Robin Williams In Touching Emmys Tribute
  Billy Crystal To Pay Tribute To Robin Williams At Emmys

© Copyright & Privacy Policy Pop Minute. All rights reserved. | Feedback