Thief Zooms in on Letterman, Steals Studio Gear

A thief jacked some high-priced studio equipment from a room in the building where David Letterman's "Late Show" is taped, according to a report.

The prowler pilfered a handheld camera and a lens from the Ed Sullivan Theater, at Broadway and 53rd, The Post reported.

A manager for Worldwide Pants said he noticed the door to an equipment room was open when he arrived for work Thursday, according to the paper.

The Sony camera was priced at $50,000, and the lens was about $15,000, the Post reported. There were no signs of forced entry.

The theft worsens an already dramatic week for the late-night legend. Letterman has feuded with former VP candidate Sarah Palin about jokes he's made in recent days about the Alaska governor's daughter.

And now that rival Conan O'Brien has moved out to Los Angeles to compete directly in the 11:30 p.m. slot, the subject of Letterman's contract has been a hot topic of conversation in the industry. Letterman, who appears to be picking up some of Jay Leno's older viewers less likely to appreciate O'Brien's younger humor, is close to extending his current deal with CBS that would keep him there until at least the spring of 2012, The Daily News reported.

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