David Letterman‘s final broadcast at the helm of The Late Show is in less than a month, and then Stephen Colbert will take over his desk. While Colbert will no doubt do an awesome job, and Letterman totally endorses him, he also admitted that he had no say in Colbert getting the job and actually, he would have picked a woman or a black comedian to host the show.
From The New York Times:
Did you have any involvement in choosing Stephen Colbert as your successor?
No. Not my show. When we sign off, we’re out of business with CBS. I always thought Jon Stewart would have been a good choice. And then Stephen. And then I thought, well, maybe this will be a good opportunity to put a black person on, and it would be a good opportunity to put a woman on. Because there are certainly a lot of very funny women that have television shows everywhere. So that would have made sense to me as well.
But you were not consulted?[shakes head no] Mm-mmm.
Did that bother you?
Yeah, I guess so. Just as a courtesy, maybe somebody would say: “You know, we’re kicking around some names. Do you have any thoughts here?” But it doesn’t bother me now. At the time, I had made the decision [to leave] and I thought, O.K., this is what comes when you make this decision.
Letterman was also asked if he has any advice for Colbert, but he doesn’t because “he isn’t a kid, he isn’t a beginner” – and fair enough on that. Frankly, I can’t wait to see what Colbert brings to the show, though likely I won’t watch much of it anyway since I’m never up that late and always forget to watch stuff on Hulu+ or whatever unless it’s for someone I really, really wanted to see.
Who would you have chosen to run The Late Show? By the way, if you’re a Letterman fan, I recommend reading the entirety of the Times piece. Really good stuff.