TBS is taking one of Conan‘s most viral videos and spinning it off into its own show.
The Turner-owned cable network has put into development Clueless Gamer, based on Conan‘s late-night sketch of the same name, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
The project, which is in development but is considered likely to go to series, will be executive produced by Conan O’Brien and his Conaco Productions banner. IMG also will produce the potential series. Unlike the Conan sketch, O’Brien will not host the spinoff. A host will be announced later, as will an episode count, should the project move forward.
“Clueless Gamer” has been a regular staple on Conan since 2012. The segment features host O’Brien — who has little to no video game experience — trying out new titles while bantering with celebrities. The segment started as a web-only endeavor before being folded into Conan as a recurring bit.
“We’re going into production next month on a new series, Clueless Gamer, based on the viral video [Conan O’Brien has] done where he essentially makes fun of video games, gets celebrities to play and makes commentary on them,” TBS president Kevin Reilly told THR during an interview about the future of the late-night talk show. “We’ve gotten to the point where video game companies are sending us their new product for us to play and make fun of because it’s been such a huge success. We’re going to go into production on a series of that.”
Video games that have been featured as part of “Clueless Gamer” include Mario Kart 8, Final Fantasy XV (with the Elijah Wood bit scoring more than 4.4 million views), Fallout 4, Grand Theft Auto V, Halo 4 and many more. The December Battlefield 1 bit with Terry Crews already has been viewed more than 2.8 million times on YouTube.
Clueless Gamer expands TBS’ relationship with O’Brien, who remains under contract with the cabler through 2018. Conaco also exec produces TBS comedy People of Earth, which will return for a second season in 2017, as well as forthcoming animated comedy Final Space, which goes into production next year.
Clueless Gamer could become the latest late-night segment to break out as its own series. Spike got the party started with Lip Sync Battle, which started on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon after NBC passed on the series; CBS Television Studios is readying Carpool Karaoke, based on the CBS The Late Late Show With James Corden bit, for Apple TV; TBS is teaming with James Corden and Late Late Show‘s Ben Winston for Drop the Mic; and ABC has Big Fan, based on Jimmy Kimmel’s “Who Knows?” bit.