David Letterman, already the longest-tenured talk show host on late-night TV, has agreed to extend his contract with CBS to remain on the “Late Show” into 2015.
The deal means Letterman will compete directly for at least a year with Jimmy Kimmel, on ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” and Jimmy Fallon, who’s taking over at NBC’s “Tonight” show this winter.
Letterman joked on Friday that he had a lengthy discussion with CBS Corp. President Leslie Moonves “and we both agreed that I needed a little more time to fully run the show into the ground.”
Letterman, 66, has been on the air for 31 years since beginning at NBC in the time slot following Johnny Carson in 1982. His contract was set to expire next summer. It’s unclear how long into 2015 the new contract extends. Neither CBS nor Letterman made any mention in Friday’s announcement of this being a final contract at the “Late Show.”
George Clooney: One of the good guys
Steven Spielberg and his foundation marked its 20th anniversary — as well as the anniversary of “Schindler’s List” — with a New York gala, honoring a fellow Hollywood heavyweight active in humanitarian work: George Clooney. “George is the best kind of humanitarian,” Spielberg told the crowd Thursday night. “The humble humanitarian.” The director called Clooney “an unparalleled example of action over apathy.” Clooney, who was awarded the Ambassador for Humanity award, told the assembled donors that “Our job is to make it hard for the bad guys to do what they’re doing, and for the good guys to ignore it.” Hosting the glittery gala at New York’s Museum of Natural History was Jon Stewart, the “Daily Show” host. Also there was Sandra Bullock, Clooney’s friend and co-star in the new space film “Gravity, ” the story of two astronauts who survive a space accident.
speaking of space films: CBS says Halle Berry will star in a serialized drama coming to the network next summer. The Oscar-winning actress will headline “Extant,” a 13-episode thriller. Berry will play an astronaut trying to reconnect with her family when she returns after a year in outer space.
out of prison: Grammy-winning singer Lauryn Hill was released from federal prison Friday and will spend three months under home confinement under terms of her guilty plea to failing to pay taxes. Hill’s attorney, Nathan Hochman, said the former Fugees singer left the prison in Danbury, Conn., on Friday. She was sentenced in July to serve three months in prison.