It’s official: Stephen Colbert will replace David Letterman as CBS’ Late Show host.
The broadcast network has tapped the 49-year-old Comedy Central host to take over the late-night franchise.
CBS has made a five-year deal with Colbert, which was announced Thursday by CBS Corp. CEO Les Moonves and CBS Entertainment chairman Nina Tassler.
“Stephen Colbert is one of the most inventive and respected forces on television,” Moonves said. “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.”
Letterman, the longest-serving late-night TV host, announced his retirement on April 3. Colbert’s premiere date will be announced after Letterman determines a timetable for his final broadcast in 2015.“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,” Tassler added. ”He is a presence on every stage, with interests and notable accomplishments across a wide spectrum of entertainment, politics, publishing and music. 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,” Colbert said. “I never dreamed that I would follow in his footsteps, though everyone in late night follows Dave’s lead. I’m thrilled and grateful that CBS chose me. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go grind a gap in my front teeth.”
Sources say Colbert informed his Colbert Report staff a couple hours ago and told his team they’re all going to work on his CBS show.