After 15 years at the helm of Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, Jon Stewart will be stepping down in 2015.
What could be a bigger shake-up to late night television than Stephen Colbert leaving The Colbert Report? The news that Jon Stewart, host of The Daily Show, will step down from his iconic role this year. Stewart himself made the reveal during the recording of his Feb. 10 episode, which was confirmed by Comedy Central via Twitter shortly after.
“For the better part of the last two decades, we have had the incredible honor and privilege of working with Jon Stewart,” Comedy Central’s post reads. “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 unparallelled platform for political comedy that will endure for years to come.”
Stewart took over as anchor of The Daily Show – Comedy Central’s news satire and late-night talk show – for Craig Kilborn in 1999. Under Stewart’s tenure, the series heavily shifted its focus to political and national media topics, becoming an outspoken critic of FOX News and the Bush administration. Despite being hailed as a “fake news” program, The Daily Show‘s coverage of elections, political processes, and current events made it a definitive news source for a generation soured by 24-hour network broadcasts.
Under Stewart, The Daily Show won almost two dozen Emmy Awards, including many for outstanding variety series and outstanding writing of a variety series. Stewart and The Daily Show also boosted the comedic careers of many on-air correspondents – Stephen Colbert, John Oliver, Larry Wilmore, and Steve Carell all being notable examples.
When exactly Stewart will leave The Daily Show isn’t clear, although rumors suggest it could happen as early as this summer. Regardless, it’s a huge shake-up to The Daily Show, where Stewart has acted as host, executive producer, and one of Comedy Central’s most consistent voices for over a decade.