During the taping of tonight’s “Late Show,” David Letterman announced next year will be his last on the show he’s hosted for more than two decades. Letterman, who turns 67 next week, signed a contract extension in October. He has spent almost half his life hosting a late night TV show: 11 years at NBC’s “Late Night,” and since 1993 fronting CBS’s “Late Show.”
“What this means now, is that Paul and I can be married,” Letterman, joked, referring to his sidekick of more than three decades, Paul Schaffer. Here’s the statement from CBS Corp. Chairman Les Moonves:
“When Dave decided on a one-year extension for his most recent contract, we knew this day was getting closer, but that doesn’t make the moment any less poignant for us. For 21 years, David Letterman has graced our Network’s air in late night with wit, gravitas and brilliance unique in the history of our medium. During that time, Dave has given television audiences thousands of hours of comedic entertainment, the sharpest interviews in late night, and brilliant moments of candor and perspective around national events. He’s also managed to keep many celebrities, politicians and executives on their toes – including me. There is only one David Letterman. His greatness will always be remembered here, and he will certainly sit among the pantheon of this business. On a personal note, it’s been a privilege to get to know Dave and to enjoy a terrific relationship. It’s going to be tough to say goodbye. Fortunately, we won’t have to do that for another year or so. Until then, we look forward to celebrating Dave’s remarkable show and incredible talents.”
The news was first reported on Twitter by the show’s bassist Mike Mills just after 4pmET. Here’s how the news networks followed up on Twitter:
“Late Show” host David Letterman says he’ll retire sometime next year. He made that announcement during the taping of his program today
— CBS News (@CBSNews) April 3, 2014
David Letterman announces he will retire in 2015 pic.twitter.com/9Y9cvE7PU9
— NBC Nightly News (@nbcnightlynews) April 3, 2014
— ABC News (@ABC) April 3, 2014
And here’s Dave’s announcement…
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