O'Brien left NBC in January after hosting "The Tonight Show" for just eight months, as his ratings plunged from those of his longtime "Tonight" predecessor, Jay Leno, who reclaimed the hour. Until last June, O'Brien had followed Leno as host of "Late Night" since 1993.
After giving O'Brien "Tonight," NBC sought to keep Leno on board with a prime-time show that quickly flopped. An attempt to move O'Brien to a post-midnight slot drew O'Brien's ire, and he walked away with a $32 million settlement package.
Although that put him in play for other networks, the deal barred him from appearing on TV until September.