11.5: Hours of weekly late-night programming Michaels produces for NBC
Why he matters: Within the halls of 30 Rock, no man is mightier than Michaels. The Saturday Night Live impresario has added to his already rich portfolio The Tonight Show, starring his former SNL castmember Jimmy Fallon, as well as Late Night With Seth Meyers, fronted by another Michaels find. Since the late-night shows' February launches, they have remained remarkably steady in the ratings, with Fallon's Tonight more than doubling Tonight's year-ago results with Jay Leno and Meyers' Late Night averaging 2.1 million viewers. "Jimmy is the full entertainer. He sings, he dances, he does impressions," Michaels, 69, told THR of Fallon's allure in February, adding of Meyers: "And Seth is truly funny and really smart, and he has a way of being smart that doesn't bother anyone." In addition to producing the 11:30 p.m.-to-1:30 a.m. weekday block on NBC, Michaels continues to lure top talent (Louis C.K., Lady Gaga, Drake) and drum up headlines (the diversity issue) at SNL, which currently is registering its highest 18-49 demo rating in four years. The reach of the married father of three extends beyond late night, too, with his Broadway Video production company producing projects including IFC's Portlandia, Hulu's The Awesomes and Fox's upcoming John Mulaney comedy.
Proudest accomplishment this year: Installing Fallon and Meyers at Tonight Show and Late Night, respectively: "Despite all the time-shifting and various mobile devices, I think they will take their place in the landscape -- and I have a feeling they'll have a big impact."