Jay Leno has allegedly taken a major pay cut after the "Tonight Show" continues to just break even.
It appears that a lousy economy can affect everyone, even if you are Jay Leno. The iconic talk show host has accepted a significant pay decrease after over a dozen staff members have been let go.
"The Tonight Show" is still one of the top rated nightly shows, however reports have stated that show is just barely breaking even according to the L.A. Times. Leno volunteered to take the cut in lieu of less people having to loose their jobs.
Leno has been making an estimated $25-30 million, but will now receive only $20 million according to sources close to the show although the exact figure has not been revealed.
"Jay's foremost concern is for the wonderful people who work for 'The Tonight Show,'" Bruce Bobbins, one of Leno's spokesmen, said in a statement to the Times. "He did what was necessary to ensure their well-being."
The show itself will also see a decreased budget. Originally set at approximately $2.3 million a night, it will now be reduced to about $1.7 million, according to sources. The show is part of the NBC Universal network, which is trying to make an overall financial improvement after falling under the ownership of Comcast.
Leno has been a staple on the show for years, which has received solidly consistent ratings. Leno took a break in 2009, in an attempt to host is own show on the same network, but was returned to his original position after only a few months.