As the dominant force in late-night television,
Like Leno, Fallon has a reputation as something of a softball interviewer, which should suit the Hollywood PR machine just fine. Unlike Leno, however, Fallon isn't a late-night institution, at least not yet, and the simple fact that he's not Leno could mean he'll have to work a bit to land the major movie stars — particularly amid all the competition he now faces from Jimmy Kimmel,
How frequently Hollywood's big names pop up on Fallon's "Tonight Show" could come down to whether he can duplicate Leno's ratings success. An average of 11.3-million total viewers tuned in to the premiere Monday, which doesn't match the 14.6 million who watched Leno's last episode but does beat out
Fallon's guest schedule for his first week is a bit light on big-screen talent, in part because this time of year tends to be a somewhat fallow period for movie releases.
Fallon's first guest was none other than
Fallon's other guests this week will include comedian
Of those guests, Cooper is perhaps the only conventional movie star: He is currently contending for a supporting actor Oscar for his role in "American Hustle" and has a few other high-profile movies in the works, including the Marvel superhero flick "Guardians of the Galaxy" in which he voices Rocket Raccoon, and a yet untitled film written and directed by Cameron Crowe.
Ferrell, meanwhile, voices the evil Lord Business in the animated hit
Wiig has a dramatic film coming up in summer, "The Skeleton Twins," but like Ferrell, the
Next week, Fallon's guest list is heavier on big-screen talent, with
The greater test of how fully A-list stars are willing to embrace Fallon's "Tonight Show" may come as the crop of big-budget spring and summer films approaches — particularly starting in April, which will see the release of "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" (April 4) and "Transcendence" (April 18).