Late-night comedy shows to return in early October after strike end

<span>Composite: Getty Images</span>
Composite: Getty Images
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Late-night television is back. Less than a day after the Writers Guild of America called off their 147-day strike following a deal with studios and streaming services, all five of the major late-night hosts – Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel, Seth Meyers and John Oliver – set their return dates for early October.

Related: Hollywood writers agree to end five-month strike after new studio deal

The four network hosts will return to air on Monday 2 October, while Oliver will precede them by an evening, as HBO’s Last Week Tonight settles into its normal Sunday night slot on 1 October. Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, which has cycled through a roster of guest hosts since Trevor Noah’s departure last December, will return on Monday, 16 October with another slate of guest hosts.

The hosts, who started a joint podcast, Strike Force Five, during the strike to support their staffs, announced their return on the show’s Instagram page with a humorous message. “Of course, in a greater sense, the Strike Force 5 will never end, because Strike Force 5 is not a place, Strike Force 5 is not a people, Strike Force 5 is barely a podcast … nay, Strike Force 5 is an idea. An idea that five men could talk on top of each other for 12 episodes, and maybe somebody would listen. As we say goodbye, we would like to thank all those somebodies. Truly, you were the heroes.”

Late-night programs immediately shuttered when the strike was announced in May, and are some of the first to return to production now that a provisional deal is in place. The three-year contract was approved by union leadership on Tuesday, which gave the go-ahead to resume work. That work can continue while the contract awaits ratification by the union’s 11,500 members.

The shows will resume, however, without certain A-lister guests, as the actors guild continues its strike, with negotiations reportedly resuming with studios next week.

Daytime productions such as The Drew Barrymore show, The Jennifer Hudson Show, The Kelly Clarkson Show and The Talk are expected to return the second week of October, per Deadline. With the exception of Kelly Clarkson, those shows had prepared to return with its non-union staff last week ahead of the strike’s conclusion, until it reversed course after backlash from union members.

The Strike Force Five hosts will return to air during a difficult period for late-night television, which has struggled to retain viewers in recent years; as of April this year, ad revenue for late-night television was down 50% from 2014, and ratings are consistently down since the Trump presidency.