DEADLINE – Conan O’Brien will welcome the cast and director of Star Wars: The Force Awakens on Thursday, December 17, the night previews begin for the movie. Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver, Lupita Nyong’o and Gwendoline Christie, along with director J.J. Abrams, will appear together on that night’s episode of Conan O’Brien’s TBS late-night show.
It will mark the ninth time Conan has featured the cast from a TV series or movie, which the show this morning boasted makes it the “leader” in such programming stunts. Conan previously has welcomed the casts of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 and X-Men: Apocalypse, as well as the TV’s Game Of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Breaking Bad, Orange Is The New Black, Sons Of Anarchy and It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia.
Those stunts goose ratings on late-night shows. In late November ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live devoted a night to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and clocked 3.29 million viewers – the show’s fourth-largest Monday audience ever in late night. Catering to the franchise’s rabid fans, JKL that night hosted Abrams, Fisher, Ridley, Driver and Boyega. During that broadcast, Abrams revealed that the seventh film in the Star Wars canon would begin with the word “this.” And a 20-second clip from the film was shown.
In the demo that night, JKL drew 1.06 million viewers – the franchise’s best demo performance on the night since March 10, 2014. (NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon logged 3.97M viewers and 1.42M demo viewers, and CBS’ The Late Show with Stephen Colbert copped 2.298M viewers and 609K demo viewers.)