Jay Leno Explains His Super Bowl Commercial

by | February 9, 2010 at 9:40 AM | TV News

(NBC)

(NBC)

On his show Monday night, Jay Leno detailed how he came to participate in the Super Bowl commercial that also starred David Letterman and Oprah Winfrey (watch it here).

“Letterman and I hadn’t seen each other in over 18 years,” Leno explained. “We lost touch. He found me on Facebook. He made a friend request, I accepted, and we hooked up and watched the game.”

The funny aside, Leno, speaking in a low-key tone of voice, appeared especially relieved that he was able to patch up hard feelings with Letterman and begin healing the wounds inflicted by his overt campaign to get his old ‘Tonight Show’ job back from Conan O’Brien.

The commercial ranked as a fan favorite among the 60-plus advertisements that ran during Sunday’s game, which was seen by more than 80 million people, a ratings record.

Letterman came up with the idea. He also wrote the spot and pulled it off last week amid tight secrecy that allowed Winfrey and Leno to sneak undetected into his Ed Sullivan Theater. Its popularity also seems to have turned into an understated, but positive sendoff for Leno, whose last show at 10 p.m. is tonight. His guests are Ashton Kutcher, ‘Precious‘ star Gabourey Sidibe, and Bob Costas from the Olympic Village in Vancouver.

He’ll resurface on March 1st, once again as the host of the ‘Tonight Show.’