The Letterman/Leno Super Bowl Ad: Nah, They Haven’t Kissed and Made Up

The Letterman/Leno Super Bowl Ad: Nah, They Haven’t Kissed and Made Up

It’s only 15 seconds long, but is any commercial from Super Bowl XLIV going to be more memorable, or have a bigger impact, than the surprising David Letterman/Oprah Winfrey/Jay Leno Super Bowl party spot for Letterman’s Late Show?

The New York TimesBill Carter has the scoop on the ad, which was Letterman’s idea, and was filmed in New York last week with extreme measures taken to keep it under wraps. How extreme? Leno and Winfrey arrived at the Ed Sullivan Theater where Letterman tapes Late Show while he was taping an episode, with Leno in a disguise that included a fake moustache.

But the ad, a take off on the spot Letterman and Oprah taped in 2007, doesn’t seem to mean there’s been a detente in the frosty relationship of former pals Letterman and Leno, which has been extra contentious as of late thanks to the Conan O’Brien/NBC debacle.

Letterman’s Late Show producer Rob Burnett tells the Times, “This wasn’t done to help Dave or to help Jay, though I think it does help both of them. It was just done because Dave thought it would be funny and would entertain people. Nothing went beyond that.”

Still, if viewers are as anti-Leno as those recent Oprah show polls suggest, being a good sport and flying to New York to do the Super Bowl ad (which promotes his competition’s show, don’t forget) can really only benefit Leno a lot, no?

Either way, as someone who is not at all a fan of Leno, I have to admit that this is a pretty cool move on his part, no matter how obviously self-promoting it is.

Whadda you think?

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