After seventeen years in the position, “The Daily Show” host Jon Stewart is stepping down from the Comedy Central late night political satire series. Stewart’s current contract ends this Fall and he is expected to stay until that time.
Stewart’s departure follows on from that of Stephen Colbert, the former ‘Daily Show’ correspondent turned “The Colbert Report” host who wrapped that show’s run in December. Colbert is now slated to take over as host of David Letterman’s “The Late Show” when he retires later this year.
Comedy Central executives have quietly been planning for Stewart’s exit, but unlike “The Colbert Report” it’s expected “The Daily Show” will continue on with someone else in the big seat. Craig Kilborn served as host for the first three years of the show with Stewart taking over in 1999.
Comedy Central’s president Michele Ganeless says: “I don’t like to think about the day that Jon leaves, but there will be a day. The show will live on. It is a franchise, like the ‘Tonight Show’. We’ll figure it out when we get there. He has set the standard. We will identify talent, and hopefully, we will find the next Jon Stewart.”