Stephen Colbert Will Replace David Letterman as Late Show Host

Stephen Colbert
Stephen Colbert is the new host of The Late Show Jason Merritt/Getty Images

The Late Show has found its new host! CBS announced Thursday, April 10, that Comedy Central personality Stephen Colbert will take over as the next host of the talk show.

David Letterman, who has led The Late Show for the past 21 years, announced his retirement on April 3, sparking widespread speculation as to who could possibly fill his spot. While Colbert was one of the early frontrunners, other names mentioned for the role included Ellen DeGeneres, Jon Stewart, and Chelsea Handler.

Colbert, 49, is currently the star of the comedy news program, The Colbert Report. The Comedy Central show has earned multiple Emmys in the years since its premiere in 2005, including a nod for Outstanding Variety Series in 2013. 

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CBS announced Colbert's new gig in a press release, with the network's President and CEO Leslie Moonves praising the funny man.

"Stephen Colbert is one of the most inventive and respected forces on television," Moonves said in a statement. "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."

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For his part, Colbert expressed his admiration for Letterman and his excitement about the opportunity. 

"Simply being a guest on David Letterman’s show has been a highlight of my career," Colbert said in the release. "I never dreamed that I would follow in his footsteps, though everyone in late night follows Dave’s lead."

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Colbert added, with humor, "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."

There is currently no exact date for Colbert's first Late Show broadcast. He will take over the program after Letterman's final show in 2015. 

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