DALLAS, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – The CBS Television Network announced Thursday that Stephen Colbert, the host, writer and executive producer of the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning “The Colbert Report,” will succeed David Letterman as the host of The Late Show, effective when Mr. Letterman retires from the broadcast.
The 66-year old Letterman announced that he will retire as host of The Late Show with David Letterman in 2015.
Letterman has been hosting the show on CBS since August 30, 1993.
Colbert, 49, began hosting his show The Colbert Report on Comedy Central in 2005. Since its debut, the series has established itself as one of Comedy Central’s highest-rated series, earning Colbert three Emmy Award nominations.
“Stephen Colbert is one of the most inventive and respected forces on television,” said Les Moonves, President and CEO, CBS Corporation. “David Letterman’s legacy and accomplishments are an incredible source of pride for all of us here, and today’s announcement speaks to our commitment of upholding what he established for CBS in late night.”
Moonves said several names came up during talks to replace Letterman, but Colbert stood far above any other candidate. “He was the only logical successor to David and when I called Dave to ask for his blessing he said exactly the same thing. He said, ‘I can’t think of anybody even a close second.'”
Moonves says he was finalizing the deal to bring Colbert to CBS while visiting North Texas. “We knew he was our guy, and he wanted to be our guy, so our teams worked throughout the weekend. I got phone calls at the Final Four in Dallas in the middle of a basketball game trying to deal with this,” said Moonves.
VIDEO: MOONVES ON BRINGING COLBERT TO CBS
“Stephen is a multi-talented and respected host, writer, producer, satirist and comedian who blazes a trail of thought-provoking conversation, humor and innovation with everything he touches,” said Nina Tassler, Chairman of CBS Entertainment. “We welcome Stephen to CBS with great pride and excitement, and look forward to introducing him to our network television viewers in late night.”
“Simply being a guest on David Letterman’s show has been a highlight of my career,” said Colbert. “I never dreamed that I would follow in his footsteps, though everyone in late night follows Dave’s lead.”
“Stephen has always been a real friend to me. I’m very excited for him, and I’m flattered that CBS chose him,” said Letterman. “I also happen to know they wanted another guy with glasses.”
While, Late Show fans now know who the next host will be, where the show will be taped is another question.
“We haven’t yet made a decision on where this show will be,” said Moonves. “It is more than likely it will be on the East Coast. We are still talking. We’re being wined and dined by New York, LA, Connecticut, New Jersey. It’s very nice to be the prettiest girl at the dance.”
The Late Show airs weeknights at 10:35 p.m. on CBS.
(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)
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