CBS wants you to know: it really, really is not trying to hire Chelsea Handler.
Upon the announcement that Craig Ferguson would be leaving the “Late Late Show” in December, there was some speculation that Handler could possibly be a candidate to replace him. She’s leaving her E! show, “Chelsea Lately,” when her contract expires at the end of the year, and her name came up during discussions of who would succeed David Letterman.
At this point, she’s practically trolling the network and us, too. Handler posted a cryptic photo on her Instagram feed April 14, holding a stack of papers with the CBS logo and the caption “Business meeting.”
You could almost feel the eyes rolling as the network fired off this denouncement to the New York Post: “There are no discussions with Chelsea Handler regarding the network’s 12:30 late night broadcast; her meeting with CBS yesterday was a general meeting with our syndication group.”
The New York Post also reports the Handler is close to finalizing a deal with Netflix for a new show.
Given that CBS had been eyeing Stephen Colbert for the “Late Show” since 2012, it’s not too much of a shock that Ferguson’s leaving. He didn’t have a chance at the “Late Show” gig, and CBS co-produces the “Late Late Show” with Letterman’s Worldwide Pants production company. Letterman is leaving the “Late Show” sometime next year.
With Colbert coming in, and a new body in Ferguson’s chair, CBS really has a chance to subvert its reputation as America’s Network Most Associated With Old People.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that.