Who is the real Stephen Colbert? He'll have plenty of time to figure it out.
The new CBS late-night host will not start his new gig until late August or early September, according to an industry insider familiar with the situation.
FOR THE RECORD:
Stephen Colbert: In the Dec. 11 Business section, an article about the launch date for Stephen Colbert's new late night show on CBS said that the comedian was hosting a week of "The Colbert Report" shows from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. In fact, he hosted one program from the university, on Monday.
The network announced Wednesday that David Letterman will host his final edition of "The Late Show" on May 20, 2015. With Colbert finishing his run on Comedy Central's "The Colbert Report" on Dec. 18, he will have an eight-month hiatus from a regular late-night TV platform.
While that seems like a lengthy break, Colbert will need that time to create a show and a new persona. Since 2005, viewers have known him as the wingnut TV pundit he plays with unwavering commitment on "The Colbert Report." He will not be taking that character to CBS.
The hiatus will also be used to hire writers and a production staff. A new set will be built in the Ed Sullivan Theater, which will also be refurbished and receive some technical upgrades. CBS will want to mount some test shows with Colbert in front of an audience before the launch.
CBS is still deciding what to run in "The Late Show" slot between Letterman's departure date and Colbert's premiere.