Conan O'Brien to entertain White House Correspondents Dinner
February 20th, 2013
10:56 AM ET
2 years ago

Conan O'Brien to entertain White House Correspondents Dinner

(CNN) - It's the biggest dinner inside the Beltway, and one of the biggest questions surrounding the annual White House Correspondents Dinner is which entertainer will headline the event.

The answer for this year's dinner, which will take place on April 27, is Conan O'Brien, host of the late night talk show "Conan" on TBS. White House Correspondents Association president Ed Henry announced the news Wednesday morning.

"Conan is one of television's most innovative and influential talents and I am absolutely thrilled that he has agreed to be this year's featured act," said Henry in a statement. "As social media has changed all aspects of the media business, Conan has embraced this shifting landscape to become a creative force both online as well as in the traditional television model."

Conan, for his part, promised on Twitter nothing short of a lecture.

Henry also hinted in his own tweet that "Team Coco" partner in comedy Andy Richter may also have a role at the dinner, which is customarily attended by the president, first lady, Washington reporters, writers and producers, and increasingly, Hollywood stars. The annual speech by the comedian is traditionally preceded by comments from the president, in which he pokes fun at himself as well as top politicians.

The dinner is a fundraiser for some $100,000 in annual academic scholarships for high school students heading to college. First lady Michelle Obama will help announce this year's recipients who will be in attendance.

This will be O'Brien's second turn headlining the dinner, following his 1995 appearance. That's when Bill Clinton was president and 32-year old O'Brien was beginning a 16-year long run as host of "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" on NBC.

Jimmy Kimmel headlined last year's dinner, with Seth Myers in the spotlight in 2011.

– CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. Borderless

    Fortunately, the entertainment industry doesn't care if you are the worst president ever, as long as you carry the Democrat brand name. (They're all about the name on the label in Hollywood.)

    February 20, 2013 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  2. Jewels

    I've grown to like him more - I think he handled the job conundrum w/ Leno so well - showed some class.

    February 20, 2013 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  3. The REAL Truth...

    @Borderless – Fortunately, the entertainment industry doesn't care if you are the worst president ever
    -------------------–
    Sorry bub.. that title is already held by Obama's predecessor. Nice try tho'....

    February 20, 2013 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  4. jan

    The person/s who chose this "entertainer" obviously doesn't have a clue what Comedy means. With O'Brien it's called B-O-R-I-N-g !!!!!

    February 20, 2013 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  5. Rudy NYC

    jan observed:

    The person/s who chose this "entertainer" obviously doesn't have a clue what Comedy means. With O'Brien it's called B-O-R-I-N-g !!!!!
    ------------
    I would tend to agree with you. To be fair though, his writing style is far superior to his delivery. Prior to beginning "Late NIght", most people had probably never heard of Conan before. It's my understanding that he had been a writer for "The Tonight Show" for years, having written some of the funniest lines over the previous decade.

    February 20, 2013 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  6. banasy©

    Rudy: Conan was also a writer for Saturday Night Live and The Simpsons.. Quite the writing pedigree.

    February 20, 2013 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |