All the rumors are true. Despite what everyone has been saying for the last month, Jay Leno is in fact leaving the Tonight Show before his contract is up next August. Jimmy Fallon will take over the hosting duties and the show will be moved from LA to New York.
Saturday Night Live Executive Producer will take over as Fallon’s Executive producer when the change happens next Spring.
“Congratulations Jimmy. I hope you’re as lucky as me and hold on to the job until you’re the old guy,” E! is reporting Leno says in a statement. “If you need me, I’ll be at the garage.”
“I’m really excited to host a show that starts today instead of tomorrow,” says Fallon.
“Jay Leno is an entertainment icon, making millions of people laugh every weeknight for more than 20 years,” Steve Burke, Chief Executive Officer of NBCUniversal says. “His long reign as the highest-rated late-night host is a testament to his work ethic and dedication to his viewers and to NBC. We are purposefully making this change when Jay is number one, just as Jay replaced Johnny Carson when he was number one. Jimmy Fallon is a unique talent and this is his time. I’m thrilled he will become the sixth host of The Tonight Show at exactly the right moment, in conjunction with our coverage of next year’s Winter Olympic Games from Sochi, Russia.”
E! is speculating Seth Meyers will take over for Fallon.