SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Craig Ferguson announced Monday that he has decided to step down as host of The Late Late Show in December 2014.
Less than a month after David Letterman announced he’s retiring in 2015, fellow CBS funnyman Craig Ferguson announced that he is leaving his show at the end of the year.
Ferguson broke the news to a studio audience during a taping of the show.
“CBS and I are not getting divorced, we are ‘consciously uncoupling, but we will still spend the holidays together and share custody of the fake horse and robot skeleton, both of whom we love very much,’” Ferguson said.
The Scottish-born talk show host was widely considered to be a leading candidate to replace Letterman on the “Late Show,” but was passed over in favor of Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert. Ferguson reportedly had a clause on his contract promising him millions if he did not get the “Late Show” gig after Letterman’s departure.
Ferguson, who took over the show in 2005 for Craig Kilborn, has several projects in the works, including hosting “Celebrity Name Game,” a syndicated game show beginning this fall, as well as developing TV projects through his production company, CBS said in a news release.
“During his 10 years as host, Craig has elevated CBS to new creative and competitive heights at 12:30,” said Nina Tassler, chairwoman of CBS Entertainment. “He infused the broadcast with tremendous energy, unique comedy, insightful interviews and some of the most heartfelt monologues seen on television.
“Craig’s versatile talents as a writer, producer, actor and comedian speak to his great days ahead. While we’ll miss Craig and can’t thank him enough for his contributions to both the show and the Network, we respect his decision to move on, and we look forward to celebrating his final broadcasts during the next eight months,” Tassler added.
Ferguson’s departure now leaves two holes in the late-night talk landscape, as Comedy Central is also looking for a replacement for Colbert when his show wraps up at the end of the year.
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