Daft Punk cancelled their appearance on Tuesday night’s episode of “The Colbert Report” due to contractual obligations to the MTV Video Music Awards… or so the story goes. However, new information suggests that the notoriously press-shy French electronic duo was never supposed to actually show up on “Colbert,” and that Robin Thicke’s “replacement” performance was a pre-planned event instead of a last-minute save.
Sources tell Billboard that Thicke’s “Colbert” performance of his No. 1 hit “Blurred Lines” was actually taped last Tuesday (July 31), when the singer was in New York promoting his new album “Blurred Lines” (Thicke also stopped by “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” last week to perform his single with Fallon and the Roots). On last night’s telecast, Colbert positioned Thicke’s appearance as a replacement for Daft Punk’s no-show, which he claimed to not know about until “two hours” before Tuesday’s taping. Instead of Daft Punk stopping by to perform “Get Lucky,” Colbert ran a pre-taped segment of various celebrities, including Jeff Bridges and Hugh Laurie, dancing to the hit single.
The host also eviscerated Van Toffler, the President of MTV Networks Music & Logo Group, on-air for allegedly stealing Daft Punk away from the Comedy Central program so that they could exclusively appear at the VMAs (both Comedy Central and MTV are owned by Viacom). Colbert even shared an e-mail from Toffler in which the MTV head oddly commented, “Checked with my peeps and will check again but they’re feelin funky on this one.” Was it all part of a larger ruse? Was Daft Punk snatched away from Comedy Central by MTV, or was the group, in fact, never planning to grace the “Colbert” stage?
Reps for MTV and Daft Punk did not immediately respond for comment. Thicke’s appearance on “The Colbert Report” preceded news that the singer’s “Blurred Lines” album and song ruled this week’s Billboard 200 chart and Hot 100 chart, respectively.