David Letterman says he’s retiring next year as host of “Late Show.”
During a taping of Thursday’s show, Letterman said he has informed his CBS bosses that he will step down in 2015, when his current contract expires. He told his audience he expects his departure will be “at least a year or so” from now.
Letterman turns 67 next week. He has the longest tenure of any late-night talk show host in U.S. television history, nearing 32 years since he created “Late Night” at NBC in 1982. He jumped to CBS to start “Late Show” in 1993.
Jay Leno, his rival to host NBC’s “Tonight Show,” retired earlier this year, making way for Jimmy Fallon.
“The man who owns this network, Leslie Moonves, he and I have had a relationship for years and years and years, and we have had this conversation in the past, and we agreed that we would work together on this circumstance and the timing of this circumstance. And I phoned him just before the program, and I said ‘Leslie, it’s been great, you’ve been great, and the network has been great, but I’m retiring,’” said Letterman.
“I just want to reiterate my thanks for the support from the network, all of the people who have worked here, all of the people in the theater, all the people on the staff, everybody at home, thank you very much. What this means now, is that Paul and I can be married.”
“We don’t have the timetable for this precisely down – I think it will be at least a year or so, but sometime in the not too distant future, 2015 for the love of God, in fact, Paul and I will be wrapping things up,” he added, to a standing ovation from the audience in the Ed Sullivan Theater.
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