Popular American comedian and TV presenter films in Cuba
U.S. TV host and comedian, Conan O'Brien went on a short four-day holiday to Cuba last month and shot a full episode in the streets of Havana for his late night TV programme; making him the first late night American host to visit the previously 'forbidden' Caribbean nation since 1959.
U.S. TV host and comedian, Conan O’Brien went on a short four-day holiday to Cuba last month and shot a full episode in the streets of Havana for his late night TV programme; making him the first late night American host to visit the previously ‘forbidden’ Caribbean nation since 1959.
Conan O’Brien, an American comedian and host of a late night show named after himself, recently set foot in Cuba to film a special episode that aired last night on U.S. TV channel, TBS.
The filming of the episode took place over a last-minute arranged four-day trip to Cuba, which quickly followed President Obama’s lifting of travel restrictions to visit Cuba.
The special episode, simply titled "Conan in Cuba" was shot continuously over Conan’s four-day stay in the island in a somewhat hap-hazard, unplanned way that worked out brilliantly to reflect the island’s real vibe and Conan’s sometimes clumsy attempts at speaking Spanish, improvising some salsa-dancing and general poking fun of himself as the classic tourist idiot.
This light comedic take on rediscovering Cuba from an American’s perspective aimed to shine a light on the island’s culture through the comedian’s characteristic approach. He explained how he wanted to purposefully avoid anything politically-geared or that could be interpreted as condescending or sarcastic.
“I felt strongly that I do not want this to be a smart, snarky American comedy take,
“I don't want this to be political. A lot of my remotes are me as a fish out of water, the jokes are usually on me, I want to go as a comedian making fun of myself and make Cuban people laugh. In that regard, I think I was successful.”
The episode shows a lot of Conan simply walking around the streets of Havana, attempting to strike up conversations with locals, and generally making it up as he goes along.
“I try to learn salsa dancing, I try to learn to play authentic Cuban music and sing using fractured eighth-grade Spanish. They let me into a cigar factory where they hand-make cigars, 400 people in a room. Obviously, I'm no good at it. "
He explains how easygoing and helpful Cubans were in helping him set-up the occasional props for some scenes and how the whole shooting turned out to be a very enjoyable process that went smoothly without a glitch.
"We borrowed a café table, put an old microphone on it, and a band of three or four women were playing (nearby), so I asked them if they'd be my house band. And then we found a guy to be Cuban Andy, who I actually have better chemistry with."
O’Brien is the latest pioneering American celebrity to have broken the ice in visiting the island shortly after Obama lifted travel restrictions to Cuba. Starlets like Paris Hilton have made a much-publicised trip to Cuba in recent weeks, clearly showing the advanced stage of the thawing process between Cuban and American relations.
Talk to a specialist
Call 020 7644 1770 to speak with our award-winning travel consultants.
Opening hours 09:00 - 21:00 GMT
Popular Holidays In Cuba Browse all
Relish the timeless charms of Cuba from the comfort of Cuba’s most cutting edge hotels
- Stay at two of Cuba’s most cutting edge hotels, bursting with modern comforts
- Relish an all-inclusive beach retreat, boasting an overabundance of facilities
- Explore Havana’s charismatic, timeless and bustling streets
Discover the relaxing Varadero and sink into sublim tranquillity
- Experience the beauty of Varadero Beach where you can relax and unwind on the tranquil white sandy beaches whilst enjoying the 24-hrs All-inclusive offered at the Luxurious Iberostar Varadero
- Stay in Havana's most highly rated hotel, with an iconic location facing Central Park
- Discover Cuba whilst staying at the 2 Top rated TripAdvisor hotels in Cuba
Ideal for trendy couples - stay at a chic and sleek hotel in the heart of vibrant Havana and then Stay next to Cuba's famous Varadero beach
- Exclusive Couples offer - Welcome Cocktail, 1 hour free Wifi Access in Havana plus a bottle of wine on arrival, 30-minute massage and a Romantic Dinner in Varadero
- Blau Varadero offers something for everyone with as little or as much as you want to do on offer including a spa
- Virgin Atlantic Sale, huge reductions sale ends 28th Feb
- Be swept away by the amazing views of Havana from Capri's rooftop pool
Soak up the history and culture in Havana before a luxurious stay at one of Varadero's most stunning beachfront resorts
- Rooftop swimming pool and jacuzzi at Parque Central where you can look over the spectacular city of Havana
- Bella Vista sits on Varadero's pristine stretch of beach with 24-Hour all-inclusive services
- Endless range of facilities and activities for the perfect stay in your beachfront paradise
- Discover Havana’s timeless, charismatic and bustling streets with a Havana city tour
One of Havana's most historically popular mafia-run hotels of the 50s, the NH Capri is a legendary property with over...
Combine exploring the old dimes of Havana with a refreshing beach retreat in Vardero on an unforgettable twin centre...
Discover the cultural and historical treasures of Havana as you're treated to 5-star service at the Iberostar Parque...
Are you searching for an adventurous holiday filled with culture, authenticity and charm? Then why not enjoy a twin...
Beyond its sober elegance of Mudejar roots and the presence of round arches and red clay tile roof, it is known for its...
Look out onto the day to day life of Havana's streets from the Casa Santy's balconies, with its great location and a...