The popularity of Comedy Central's satirical news TV series The Daily Show has done wonders for the careers of several former (or soon to be former) stars on the show.
For example, Steve Carrell made his name working as a correspondent on the series, before he became a big movie star; John Oliver and Larry Wilmore have gone from their Daily Show days to hosting their own series (Last Week Tonight and The Nightly Show, respectively); and current host Jon Stewart will have an easier time bringing attention to his future pursuits after he steps down as host later this year, thanks to the fame he's gotten from his time on the show.
(Oh yeah, and that Colbert guy's done alright too, it seems.)
Stewart's last appearance as host on The Daily Show will take place on August 6th this year - something you can watch him announce in the video featured at the top of this article. The actor/filmmaker also recently conducted an in-depth interview with The Guardian, where he discussed the various reasons he's stepping down as Daily Show host - including, so that he can pursue other projects (covering similar political/social topics), while also having more time to spend with his kids.
Ultimately, however, Stewart emphasized that his reasons are personal, rather than being related to the current quality of The Daily Show:
"It’s not like I thought the show wasn’t working any more, or that I didn’t know how to do it. It was more, ‘Yup, it’s working. But I’m not getting the same satisfaction.' These things are cyclical. You have moments of dissatisfaction, and then you come out of it and it’s OK. But the cycles become longer and maybe more entrenched, and that’s when you realise, ‘OK, I’m on the back side of it now.’”
Daily Show correspondent Trevor Noah is set to takeover as host after Stewart steps down, though of late that conversation has been fixated on Noah's previous comedy work - in particular, the various jokes (touching on sensitive subject matter) that he's posted via social media over the years. Stewart, for his part, has argued for Noah to be allowed a proper shot at leading the Daily Show charge, having referred to the comedian as an "incredibly thought, considerate and funny" fellow in the past.
It will be interesting to see how Stewart's departure affects the general perception of The Daily Show. On the one hand, as Stewart has also pointed out, the series is a well-oiled machine that can function perfectly well with or without him (like it did when he was filming Rosewater) - so much that The Daily Show has become an institution in and of itself lately. On the other hand, Stewart stepping down will have some effect on how the show is perceived during the immediate aftermath.
... But as Stewart put it, "If Oprah can leave and the world still spins, I honestly think it will survive me."
The Daily Show airs weeknights on Comedy Central.
Source: The Guardian