NBC said it canceled the taping for Friday night’s broadcast of “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” due to what it called “a private Fallon family matter.”
A repeat from September will air in the broadcast’s place.
Fallon’s mother is ill and in a hospital, according to a person familiar with the matter, and the “Tonight” host is joining his family to be with her.
This person said no production changes for next week’s tapings are planned at this time.
Working on one of TV’s many late-night shows can be an all-encompassing affair, and the networks that air the programs have been known to give time off to the hosts when personal matters intervene. ABC this week has enlisted celebrities like Jennifer Lawrence and Shaquille O’Neal to stand in for Jimmy Kimmel as he attends to medical issues related to his son. NBC gave Fallon days off when his children were born. CBS famously brought in stand-in hosts in 2003 when David Letterman was out for over a month due to shingles.
Fallon’s “Tonight Show” continues to lead in viewers between 18 and 49, the demographic most coveted by advertisers. CBS’ “Late Show With Stephen Colbert” is the most-watched program in late-night at present, while ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” has recently won a viewership boost in the wake of its host tackling political issues in his monologues with more regularity.