Conan O’Brien can get a whole lot of money from NBC as a parting gift, but there will be strings attached — not the least of which … Conan cannot trash the network.
Sources tell us NBC wants a liquidated damages clause if Conan says anything disparaging about the network once he leaves. Essentially that means there is a clause in the contract that says Conan will automatically pay a predetermined amount of money if he says bad things about NBC.
And, as we have previously reported, NBC will demand that Conan not take another hosting job for a certain period of time.
Sources say NBC will be paying Conan a hefty sum, but that will be offset by any amount Conan makes for his next hosting gig. So if Conan makes a deal with FOX, NBC can reduce the amount it pays Conan by the amount FOX forks over.
FYI — we’ve learned Conan’s existing contract already has an offset clause in the event he leaves NBC and takes another job.
We’re told NBC has already given Conan’s lawyers a draft of the agreement and his hired guns were going over it Friday night. The deal should be finalized Saturday.
Once the deal gets inked, NBC will announce Conan is leaving the network. The network will also announce what we first reported — that Jay Leno will get the full hour from 11:35 PM to 12:35 AM and it will be called “The Tonight Show” — just like old times.Read more: Here