You may recall that things didn't exactly go smoothly the last time NBC tried to move Jay Leno off of The Tonight Show and replace him with someone younger (and 100% more ginger). But with Jimmy Kimmel having moved to 11:35 p.m. on ABC and Leno's ratings taking a hit since the L'affaire Team Coco, The Hollywood Reporter claims that NBC is gearing up to announce in May that the 2013-14 television season will be Leno's final one as host. And everyone's favorite Neil Young impersonator Jimmy Fallon is in line to take over for him.
The Hollywood Reporter cites "two high-level industry sources" about their scoop, and they say NBC is urgent to move forward because of Kimmel's competition. “The more time Jimmy Kimmel is in that slot, the more the young audience goes that way, the harder it is for Jimmy [Fallon] to keep that audience,” says one of their sources. A network veteran agreed that Kimmel is doing well: "Jay wins overall, but on any given night, it's neck-and-neck in 18-49. I understand where they might have fear and also feel that they own the solution [in Fallon.]"
NBC has denied the report and Leno's rep said, "We do not speculate on rumor." This isn't the first time this rumor has come up: back in December, the Daily News reported that NBC executives had begun "quietly" exploring the option of replacing Leno with Fallon.
Previously, Fallon joked about the possibility of taking over for Leno: "If there's one thing I've learned from Dave and Conan, it's that hosting this show is a one-way ticket to not hosting The Tonight Show."