Jon Stewart will step down as host of “The Daily Show” at the end of this year, Comedy Central confirmed Tuesday. Stewart, who took over as host of the satirical news show after Craig Kilborn left in 1999, reportedly announced the departure at a taping in New York Tuesday afternoon. The news quickly began to leak, with some fans who apparently saw the taping posting about it on Twitter.
Michele Ganeless, president of Comedy Central, released the following statement:
“For the better part of the last two decades, I have had the incredible honor and privilege of working with Jon Stewart. His comedic brilliance is second to none. Jon has been at the heart of Comedy Central, championing and nurturing the best talent in the industry, in front of and behind the camera. Through his unique voice and vision, ‘The Daily Show’ has become a cultural touchstone for millions of fans and an unparalleled platform for political comedy that will endure for years to come. Jon will remain at the helm of ‘The Daily Show’ until later this year. He is a comic genius, generous with his time and talent, and will always be a part of the Comedy Central family.”
There is no word yet on Stewart’s replacement, his next move or if the show will continue in its current incarnation without him. As of late, the Comedy Central lineup -- and late night in general -- has been experiencing a shakeup of sorts. Last month, “The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore” replaced the “Colbert Report,” whose host, Stephen Colbert, will take over for David Letterman, who is retiring in May.