According to Berg, Helen Hunt was particularly thin-skinned. After a producer critiqued her performance during an appearance to promote the then-hit NBC sitcom 'Mad About You,”' she refused to return for 14 years.
Kobe Bryant also boycotted Leno, after Leno made a joke about his rape case. Bryant was accused of sexually assaulting a 19-year-old in 2003.
Not that show snubs were a one way street. The book claims that during the O.J. Simpson media spectacle, Leno snubbed Simpson's attorney Johnnie Cochran as a guest. Leno reportedly felt strongly that Simpson had committed the murders. Leno did allow prosecutors Marcia Clark and Christopher Darden to come on.
Once on the show, some celebs did not perform quite as expected. The show staff learned in an interview with Jesse Jackson that he had immense stage fright.
[. . .]
That's not to say that Leno did not sometimes open up the show's wallet for guests. The show paid $35,000 in 2008 to charter a plane for Sarah Palin and her family to fly in from Anchorage, Alaska.
To woo an appearance from President Bill Clinton, Berg on behalf of the show sent him a custom-made tandem bicycle as a get-well present after his heart surgery in 2004, which cost $12,000. Clinton sent the bike back, as Hilary Clinton was a senator in New York at the time (and thus could not legally accept the gift.)
Secrets of the Jay Leno show revealed: New book lifts the lid on celebrity divas and behind-the-scenes craziness from the show's 22-year run
The book 'Behind the Curtain: An Insider’s View of Jay Leno’s Tonight Show' by Dave Berg discusses the celebrity antics that took place during the show's run
Berg calls out Christian Bale in the book for being disagreeable in a pre-show interview
Celebrities that boycotted appearing on the show include Kobe Bryant, Helen Hunt, and Bill Clinton
Berg's book goes on sale on Sunday
By DAILY MAIL REPORTER
PUBLISHED: 23:15 EST, 14 June 2014 | UPDATED: 13:18 EST, 15 June 2014