That Time Craig Ferguson Solved the Case of the Missing Guest
With a notoriously nocturnal timeslot of 12:37 am Los Angeles time, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson was an easy show to miss for casual fans with early bedtimes. Apparently, that group includes Seann William Scott.
The American Pie star was slated to appear on The Late Late Show one fateful Friday night in September, 2008, but “Los Angeles traffic” caused Scott to miss his date with the Scotsman. Scott's absence forced Ferguson to do what he does best — he improvised. This mishap led to one of the most memorable and impromptu interviews in Ferguson’s career as, instead of asking Stiffler a total of two pre-planned questions before ripping up his notecards, Ferguson shredded the night’s entire playbook and invited segment producer Lisa Ammerman to sit in the armchair and answer his off-the-cuff questions.
On The Late Late Show, Ammerman was responsible for coordinating the celebrity guest appearances, so Scott’s failure to attend his scheduled interview should have been the biggest headache of her evening. Then Craig told her to put on the mic.
Ammerman handled her playful punishment graciously, and, despite her insistence that she was deeply uncomfortable on-camera, she and Ferguson played off of each other about as well as any aggrieved boss and his culpable employee could. Ammerman was reportedly instrumental in organizing Ferguson’s extended interview with Archbishop Desmond Tutu one year later, an episode that earned Ferguson a Peabody Award, so she probably didn’t stay in the doghouse for longer than those four anxious on-camera minutes.
When Scott finally made his appearance on the show two months later, he and Ferguson celebrated the occasion by once again throwing Ammerman under the bus. Scott, a self-professed fan of Ferguson, joked that his absence was Ammerman’s fault for giving him bad directions, though he noted that, after the original episode aired, his friends told him, “Your funniest (late-night) appearance was the one where you didn’t show up.”