These Late Night Shows Are Shutting Down Due to the Writers Guild Strike

Updated: May 05, 2023

These beloved television shows recently went dark, with no set date of returning anytime soon.

If you’ve noticed some of your favorite late-night shows airing old episodes this week, we promise, you’re not seeing things—it’s actually on purpose. As of Tuesday, May 2, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) is officially on strike, meaning that many of the shows that rely on fresh material from television writers are currently on hold until further notice.

The Writers Guild went on strike after not reaching an agreement on the recent demands they were seeking before renewing their contract, which expired earlier this week. One of the biggest demands has to do with studios taking advantage of the transition to streaming services as a way to underpay entertainment writers what they are worth. Because of the strike, many television shows—including late-night talk shows—are not airing new episodes until an agreement is reached.

What shows is the strike affecting?

Jimmy Fallon hosts "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" at Rockefeller CenterMike Coppola/Getty Images

As of Tuesday, the following late-night shows are currently not airing new episodes due to the WGA strike.

  • The Late Show with Stephen Colbert
  • Jimmy Kimmel Live!
  • The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
  • Late Night with Seth Meyers
  • The Daily Show
  • Real Time with Bill Maher
  • Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
  • Saturday Night Live

Thankfully, many of these shows are still paying writers while they are on strike and providing full benefits.

While these shows are currently dark until the demands of the strike have been met, some of the shows will be airing reruns until further notice. Show such as Saturday Night Live will not air new episodes, including the recent episode intended to air this Saturday with former SNL cast member Pete Davidson.

As of now, with no particular date for these shows to return, viewers will have to turn to rewatching television shows on their streaming services, or reruns on cable.

Why is the Writers Guild on strike?

For the first time in 15 years, the WGA has gone on strike after film studios failed in making an agreement toward their contracts. According to the WGA Strike website, these demands included increasing minimum compensation for writers, standardizing compensation for features whether they are released in theaters or streaming, addressing the abuse of mini rooms and more. The strike officially started at midnight when the contract ended.

Currently, 98.4% of the WGA members—which is compromised of around 11,500 writers—voted for these contract changes, with hopes of negotiating with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), which represents eight major studios: Amazon, Apple, Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery, NBC Universal, Netflix, Paramount and Sony.

What can I do to support the strike?

If you’re looking to stand with the WGA in solidarity and fight for the writer’s rights for fair pay for their work—and fairness in their stressful, everyday work environments—there are a few ways you can support them through the Writer’s Guild strike.

  • Share it on social media: The WGA has supplied a few graphics you can share online to stand in solidarity. From bold graphics to actual data and facts that represent the different issues they are fighting for, you can bring awareness to their demands by raising your voice as well. You can also follow along with what’s happening with the strike over on Twitter.
  • Publicly endorse their contract: The WGA has a form where you can publicly endorse the contract campaign as a company and receive regular updates about the strike.