Jon Stewart Taking Break from ‘Daily Show’ to Direct ‘Rosewater’; John Oliver to Fill In

Published 2 years ago by

 Jon Stewart Taking Break from Daily Show to Direct Rosewater; John Oliver to Fill In

Few remember (or, at least, acknowledge) that The Daily Show existed for some years before Jon Stewart took over hosting duties from Craig Kilborn in 1999. Under Stewart’s leadership, the late-night comedy news program grew into a genuine cultural institution.

After nearly a decade-and-a-half of hosting The Daily Show, Stewart will be stepping down – at least, for a little while. It looks as if the comedian will be taking a three-month break from hosting the show in order to pursue a rather different stage in his career.

The Hollywood Reporter has announced that Jon Stewart plans to take a hiatus from hosting The Daily Show over the summer of 2013. He will use this time to direct his first feature film, titled Rosewater.

In Stewart’s place, Daily Show correspondent John Oliver will be sitting in the show’s hosting chair. Both a writer and presenter for The Daily Show since 2006, Oliver has proven himself a wry and clever comedian. Oliver’s promotion could hint at changes to come – after all, big comic names such as Steve Carell (Seeking a Friend for the End of the World), Ed Helms (The Hangover Part III), and Stephen Colbert (Mr. Peabody & Sherman) all found initial fame via The Daily Show.

The Daily Show John Oliver Jon Stewart Taking Break from Daily Show to Direct Rosewater; John Oliver to Fill In

The film that Stewart will be directing is an entirely different animal than almost anything in his career. Rosewater is based off the best-selling nonfiction book Then They Came for Me: A Family’s Story of Love, Captivity, and Survival. The book tells the story of Maziar Bahari, an Iranian-British journalist who was imprisoned and tortured in Iran’s most infamous prison in 2009. Bound and blindfolded during his interrogation sessions, Bahari could only identify his main tormentor by the scent of the cologne he wore – rosewater.

Does Stewart’s decision to take time off from The Daily Show indicate that he’s gearing up for a new phase in his career? His attachment to such a dramatic debut feature does seem to indicate that he intends to go in a different creative direction. This seems especially strange, given the host’s previous involvement in offbeat and comedic features such as Half-Baked. Will he be able to pull off heavy, painful material – even from behind the camera?

Until his actual departure from (and subsequent return to) The Daily Show, Stewart’s creative future is up in the air. At the very least, audiences can be assured that the show will be in good hands with John Oliver. As for Rosewater, we’ll have to wait and see if this three-month hiatus bears worthwhile fruit.


The Daily Show will continue to air new episodes Monday through Thursday on Comedy Central.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

Follow Kyle Hembree on Twitter @ProjectNightHam
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  1. I will miss him during his hiatus. John Oliver is pretty good, but Jon Stewart he is not.

    By the way: does anyone remember him playing the crazed bio teacher in The Faculty, the movie that put Josh Hartnett on the map? I think Stewart did a good job as an actor in a little more serious role.

    • I would say his half baked role was better. Ever see a 20 bill……on weeeeed?

  2. I hope he leaves and never comes back.

    • Yeah, and why don’t you do the same.

      • Please don’t feed the trolls……It just makes their heads bigger

  3. I wonder how he will spin that novel to somehow portray a left-wing message… My curiosity is piqued…

    • Iran is full of evil people and should be bombed by Israel and the U.S.

  4. Argo 2

  5. It be funnier if Colbert took over and did both for awhile.

  6. Everybody wants to be somebody else. Even those who have the best job in the world want something else. Look at how the creators of South Park are producing fewer and fewer episodes, so they can go off and do other things on Broadway or wherever. The Daily Show and South park are the only shows I watch. It sucks that their creators are seeming bored and restless.

    John Stewart already spends more than half the year on vacation. Why does he need to take another 3 months off? I like John Oliver, but John Stewart IS the Daily Show.

    • I agree with you on that note, especially with South Park. That show used to be consistently hilarious up until the last two seasons or so when Parker & Stone were focusing on their musical. Since then, they still only get an occasional episode that gets me to laugh my ass off. I certainly hope that they can get the spring in their step back for future seasons seeing as Comedy Central renewed the show’s contract last year up until 2016. If they truly don’t want to continue with the show, I hope they can somehow negotiate an early release from their contract rather than letting other writers come in and ruin the show for its fans.

  7. Oliver will have to broaden his narrow version of comedy a great deal to host and interview. I doubt he is suited for the task. He’s as hit and miss as any of the correspondents, but he also seems very one noted and 2 dimensional. I’d say that John Hodgeman or Larry Wilmore would be obvious better choices for their subtlety and reserve. Each can posses dignity and discuss serious topics without being ridiculous. Not sure that’s Oliver’s strong suit. When Carrell hosted many years ago he did a very admirable job, being disarmingly out of place and yet capable and genuinely likable as the host. Guess he’s too busy making mediocre movies now though…

  8. That’s very unusual. I wish Stewart the best of luck though.
    As for John Oliver filling in, he’s funny imo, but he’s going to have to step up his game a LOT to keep the viewership that the show gets.

    • I wouldn’t say it is a complete surprise though. Jon Stewart has always seemed to me like someone who thinks he’s really brilliant.

      (Note, I said he THINKS he is…)

    • The Daily Show is what it is. Jon Stewart and a bunch of damn fine writers, including Stephen Colbert and John Oliver.

  9. I’d like to see Lewis Black host. It’d probably kill him though

  10. I would love to see a John Oliver/Hodgeman tag team ala Even Stephven.

  11. Stewart is a marxist mouthpiece. Good riddance. Hopefully, Oliver will offer objectivity and he’ll probably be much funnier telling his own humor, than Stewart was parroting what others wrote.

    • I agree Stewart is annoying and always high on himself.

  12. Not really digging Oliver

  13. I hope Jon Stewart comes back but John Oliver has been doing a great job in my opinion. It hasn’t diminished my interest in the show. The dynamics of the show haven’t really changed so give it up to the writers, they make it work and Oliver gets it done.

  14. Stewart can stay gone as far as I’m concerned.

  15. April 11, 2014 is a day of hunting Mars meaning me Diana Emilia Cristescu in Toronto. This is the legacy of the two Clintons, of Vladimir Putin, of a hand of “staff” from CBC, and especially of the Rovers on Mars – a bunch of cretin Russians placed in Bassarabia to learn Romanian since the 1950s by the government from Russia,and then placed where they have been as invaders of Afghanistan in the beginning of the 1960′s at a time when no one spoke about terror in Afghanistan. With their help, the government from Russia was able to invade the eastern European states.
    Today, from parents to their children, the same Bolsheviks as Rovers On Mars placed in the Canadian Space (as they were following Mars) (see in youtube what Marc laBresh is saying about Mars in his video clips La Mere fr om 3600 secondes d’extase) and kept in the invisible space on the food and the money of the Canadian taxpayers, with the good knowledge of the CBC , CTV, and City TV, also fabricators of false stories about me – Mars. How many professors of mine from Glendon – York university did pay in order not to talk about the fact that I have a BA at Glendon -an Honor Program with a Major in Political Sciences and a minor in Economics? How many professors from George Brown College were asked and threatened to shout up about me, hiding my high marks of A, and A+, and B+ from both Dental Assisting and Dental Hygiene, Dental Hygiene being the program from where I had to leave just because they bitten up my dearest friend Joseph Bodnar – a former technolog at CBC just because he kept me in his apartment for more than 17 years. Why in the world, the rovers of Mars who see everything from what I am doing, writing, send e-mails, where I am going to do the groceries. The Rovers on Mars who became the secret government in Canada (for more than sure a hidden Russian invasion in Canada, just because the junks from the CBC love to be informed through the Cyber Space about everything what is going on in the financial and economical markets all around the globe, at the expense of accepting the murder of innocent people in Toronto, as well as in the world. I sent to the United Nations a long letter of 98 pages saying to them about how Canada is using wrongly its nuclear power with such junks in invisible filed – the rovers on Mars, as well as many other things. Many people from different centers of the United nations were bitten up and other s murdered – in Norway, Japan, Spain, Ecuador. Why?
    When all of your crimes Rovers on Mars are going to be stopped?

    Diana Emilia Cristescu

  16. I can’t live without seeing The Daily Show with Jon Stewart!! I need that show to grind up the political mess so often going on! Humor is healthy and especially Stewart’s!

  17. I will miss jon’s ability to deliver and present his comments very understandably, entertaining and I really like his jesters. I wish him the very best in what ever he pursues! Sincerely, Dave Lekie

  18. Jon is very good and had a great run, but it might be a good time for us all to take a little break from each other.