The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Lifestyle

April 4, 2013

Leno to leave NBC's 'Tonight Show' next spring

(Continued)

Ryan Kelly, 39, of Los Angeles, said he's a Leno fan but added that the comedian has "had a good run. ... It's probably time for a fresh face. He's done a good job and I'm sure he'll pop up on TV somewhere else."

As for switching to Fallon, "I'll give it a shot," Kelly said.

Leno couldn't resist a jab at NBC in his monologue Wednesday, even as he as he lauded Fallon as "a hell of a guy" who is going to do a "great job."

"I just have one request for Jimmy: We've all fought, kicked and scratched to get this network up to fifth place. Now we have to keep it there. Jimmy, don't let it slip into sixth!" Leno joked, according to an NBC transcript.

Fallon took a puckish approach in his monologue.

"Welcome! This is 'Late Night with Jimmy Fallon ... for now," he said. "You guys probably heard the news: I'm going to be taking over the 'Tonight Show' next February! But don't worry. Until February, our focus is right here on whatever this show is called."

On his "Late Show" Wednesday on CBS, David Letterman feasted on NBC's announcement.

"Jay Leno now is being replaced, and this is the second time this has happened," he said in his monologue. "I mean, it's crazy. He's being replaced by a younger late night talk show host — what could possibly go wrong? Honestly. They had pretty good luck with this in the past."

Later, Letterman offered a backhanded salute to Leno that wished him well with his stand-up appearances.

"But good luck to Jay. I know he'll be out on the road, getting it done and taking care of business. And congratulations on a nice long run there at the 'Tonight Show,' if, in fact, you're not coming back," Letterman said, according to a CBS transcript.

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