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That's all folks: David Letterman to quit late night next year

He outlasted Leno. Now he’s happy.

LONG-SERVING HOST of ‘Late Show’ David Letterman has announced he’ll be stepping down from the role next year, after a 22-year-run.

CBS News reports that he made the announcement during the regular Thursday taping of his show in Manhattan this afternoon.

Here’s what he told the crowd:

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 theatre, all the people on the staff, everybody at home, thank you very much.

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 [Shaffer, his band-leader] and I will be wrapping things up.

His announcement comes just months after long-term rival Jay Leno presented his last ‘Tonight Show’ on rival network, NBC.

“When Dave decided on a one-year extension for his most recent contract, we knew this day was getting closer, but that doesn’t make the moment any less poignant for us,” president and CEO of CBS Les Moonves said.

Letterman premiered “Late Night” on NBC in 1982, but took the show to CBS in 1993 after NBC picked Leno over him to succeed the legendary Johnny Carson as host of ‘The Tonight Show’.

Some highlights from his late-night career…

Dave’s first night back after 9/11

(Youtube: Steve Noyce)

Interviewing Hunter S Thompson

(Youtube: jerkylfish)

An odd encounter with Crispin Glover

(Youtube: tminus23)

Dave welcomes back Johnny

(Youtube: UklaTheMokk)

On the late night war with Jay

(Youtube: ComedyClups)

And a remarkable confession

(Youtube: Nick Doucette)

One commentator’s already raised an intriguing prospect… 


Read: The Strypes performed on David Letterman and totally stole the show

Read: Bill Murray arrives at Letterman in majestic white regalia

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