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TV Column
Posted at 03:09 PM ET, 11/20/2012

Johnny Carson returning to television

Johnny Carson is returning to television.
TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JOHNNY CARSON -- Aired 11/28/79 -- Pictured: (l-r) Actor/comedian Charlie Callas during an interview with host Johnny Carson on November 28, 1979. (Note: The interview with Callas will not be part of the new series.) (Joey Del Valle - ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Turner Classic Movies has licensed 50 of Johnny Carson’s “Tonight” show interviews from the Carson Entertainment Group – including chats with some brighter bygone stars in the Hollywood firmament: Bette Davis, James Stewart, Fred Astaire, William Holden, Gregory Peck, Gene Kelly, Henry Fonda, etc.

TCM previously ran a series of Dick Cavett talk show interviews, with Mel Brooks, Woody Allen, Robert Mitchum, Alfred Hitchcock, etc. – which went on sale as a DVD collection. Cavett was writer for Carson, as well as “Tonight” show’s second host Jack Paar, before landing his own talk show

Anyway, many of the interviews in “Carson on TCM” have not aired since they first premiered on NBC.

Unlike Jay Leno, Carson owned the rights to his “Tonight” show broadcasts, not NBC.

“Carson on TCM” also will include an interview with Truman Capote, who had some pointed things to say about Hollywood stars.

And yes, TCM’s current “The Essentials” co-host Drew Barrymore will be included in the lineup – at age 7. None of her more-talented thespian ancestors, though -- sadly.

The project was pitched to TCM by Peter Jones, who also produced PBS’s docu “Johnny Carson: King of Late Night,” and Carson Entertainment Group prez Jeff Sotzing.

On TCM, Carson will be seen interviewing:

Don Adams

Julie Andrews

Fred Astaire

Lauren Bacall

Lucille Ball

Drew Barrymore

Jack Benny

Candice Bergen

Carol Burnett

George Burns

Mel Brooks

Michael Caine

Truman Capote

Chevy Chase

Sean Connery

Bing Crosby

Tony Curtis

Bette Davis

Sammy Davis Jr.

Doris Day

Dom DeLuise

Angie Dickinson

Kirk Douglas

Sally Field

Henry Fonda

Goldie Hawn

Charlton Heston

William Holden

Bob Hope

Diane Keaton

Gene Kelly

Jack Lemmon

Steve Martin

Dudley Moore

Mary Tyler Moore

Gregory Peck

Tony Randall

Ronald Reagan

Burt Reynolds

Susan Sarandon

George C. Scott

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Neil Simon

Red Skelton

Sylvester Stallone

James Stewart

Elizabeth Taylor

Robin Williams

Jonathan Winters

Shelley Winters

By  |  03:09 PM ET, 11/20/2012

 
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