David Letterman Reveals His True Feelings about Jay Leno Hosting Tonight Show, Johnny Carson 1991

  • Published on Mar 31, 2011
  • Watch Carson episodes every night on Antenna TV at 10:00PM ET / 7:00PM PT and 4:00PM ET / 1:00AM PT.
    David Letterman reveals how he really feels about Jay Leno being the new host of "The Tonight Show" with Johnny Carson in 1991. Johnny asks David if he envisions himself hosting his show 20 years from now.
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Comments • 3 951

  • ghostrider
    ghostrider 11 hours ago

    "Here's J O H N N Y! Thanks for the memories!

  • Scott Robbins
    Scott Robbins 15 hours ago

    all of those years watching David Letterman show, I never knew he was a communist

  • John Deagle
    John Deagle 2 days ago

    Letterman is not even remotely funny.

  • Morgan Stone
    Morgan Stone 3 days ago

    I think Jay Leno was the perfect fit after Carson. I like Letterman a lot but he needed to be a bit more independent the way Conan seems to be. Leno and Letterman aren't Carson but who is? Leno was successful for almost 2 decades and he's funny, sweet and smart

  • Gall ery
    Gall ery 4 days ago

    If he'd accepted NBC's offer to drop Jay in exchange for not jumping to CBS, Dave would've been the one getting retired in favour of Conan, or some other host. NBC fired Jay when he was consistently #1. How long would they have put up with Dave's second place ratings? CBS even paid him more than Jay. Getting "TTS" would probably have meant a shorter tv career for Dave.

  • SS Drina
    SS Drina 4 days ago

    My list of all time best late night show hosts
    Johnny Carson
    David Letterman
    Conan O’Brien
    Stephen Colbert
    Jimmy Kimmel
    Craig Ferguson
    Jay Leno
    James Corden
    Seth Meyers
    John Oliver
    Trevor Noah..... and I guess
    Jimmy Fallon

  • sluggo Notnancy
    sluggo Notnancy 6 days ago +1

    Nice to remember when "late night" was still civilized, and actually fun to watch. The liberal democrat scum filling the airways with their hatred these days makes that very difficult.

    • d2tmfk
      d2tmfk 4 days ago

      seriously? democratic hatred? Also, how are they "scum" ?
      no real need to answer because i'm sure you've got the neighbors dog bent over and some fox news going. please jump off a bridge and take any offspring with you.

  • ParangLima
    ParangLima 7 days ago

    That hideous nect tie

  • Psychotic Bob
    Psychotic Bob 7 days ago +1

    NBC fucked Letterman HARD!

  • greg williams
    greg williams 7 days ago +2

    I used to like watching David Letterman......then he turned bitter, political and cheated on his wife.

  • Ronnie Watkins
    Ronnie Watkins 8 days ago

    Johnny was the true King Of Late Night. Always liked Letterman, but he became a bit too serious and political in the end (and now look at late night TV). Great clip and interesting interview between these two icons.

  • wcompto
    wcompto 10 days ago

    suck up groveling to Carson. What a douche

  • Daryeinne Warner
    Daryeinne Warner 11 days ago

    Letterman and johnny was the best.leno was a counterfeit who wasn't in their league and wasn't funny at all.....all of you haters get a life.

  • Bob NA
    Bob NA 12 days ago

    Lettermen was never funny.

  • Bruce Alan
    Bruce Alan 13 days ago

    When is Letterman going to grow up? Leno's having fun with his cars and his new show - Letterman is still nursing a grudge for getting his ass whipped.

  • David Edward
    David Edward 14 days ago

    Even as a guest, Letterman was always the last to sit.

  • Fred Pearson
    Fred Pearson 16 days ago

    Don't be fooled--his protestations aside, he was plenty angry he didn't get the Tonight Show. Having said that, all things considered, he did okay for himself.

  • talbot
    talbot 17 days ago

    Is Letterman on coke here?

  • dizzotizzo69
    dizzotizzo69 18 days ago

    In real life Dave is a C*NT Bastage x 10.

  • M L
    M L 19 days ago

    loafers & white socks

  • Judy Jessee
    Judy Jessee 19 days ago

    Brother said two of the best

  • Jon Phillips
    Jon Phillips 20 days ago

    Letterman is an ass

    • Scott Frame
      Scott Frame 20 days ago

      That's presently. In the early days that statement would be way off.

  • BPCADownStateChapter
    BPCADownStateChapter 21 day ago +1

    AT 6:30 when Johnny asks Dave if he can envision himself doing his show for 30 years ? , Dave's reaction is Priceless ! :-) Two class acts, RIP JC and Happy Retirement Dave, aka, father time

  • Sally MJ
    Sally MJ 23 days ago

    I wonder if Letterman got mean because Jay Leno got the Tonight Show, or whether he just got mean because he would’ve gotten mean regardless. He just got cuttingly bitter mean.

  • Alexander Arnold
    Alexander Arnold 24 days ago

    David Letterman is a stage name and is a clone.

  • grumpy old fart
    grumpy old fart 24 days ago

    Leno or Letterman wouldn't amount to a scab on Carsons ass.

  • Stephen300o
    Stephen300o 24 days ago

    David being John Malkovich

  • Bob Fox
    Bob Fox 26 days ago

    Letterman sucked. They made a good choice.

  • dave rg
    dave rg 26 days ago +1

    I'm still pissed off about that and haven't watched since Carson left to begin with

  • Jack Black
    Jack Black 28 days ago

    Letterman blew. Great story about helium, man.

  • Chance1957
    Chance1957 29 days ago

    And now they have that clown from SNL hosting the Tonight Show.

  • Duke of Norfolk
    Duke of Norfolk 29 days ago

    Letterman at the height of his power.

  • wreckim
    wreckim Month ago

    Comedy free of politics...those were the days. However, this feud with Jay kind of started the ugly side of both.

  • Edward Dergosits
    Edward Dergosits Month ago

    Well here we are 8 years later. Jay Leno has a great youtube channel and no one has heard about David Letterman. Hopefully both are happy

    • Edward Dergosits
      Edward Dergosits 29 days ago

      +wreckim I meant 8 years from the date this video was posted.

    • wreckim
      wreckim Month ago

      You mean 28? Jay was always funnier to me....but David a better interviewer IMO.

  • A
    A Month ago

    This is reductions. Who acts like this. Why did we make him famous!

  • MikeN' Ike
    MikeN' Ike Month ago +6

    Carson: Cn you see yourself doing this for 20 years?
    Funny thing is he actually went on for more than 20 years!

    • MikeN' Ike
      MikeN' Ike 16 days ago

      +Thoughmuchistaken Really? Are you Dave's spokesman? Johnny said "this" as in this line of work. And again missed the whole point.

    • Thoughmuchistaken
      Thoughmuchistaken 20 days ago

      +MikeN' Ike Daves response was most definitely with regard to Late Night.

    • Joojoo Jurrila
      Joojoo Jurrila 23 days ago

      +MikeN' Ike The point was that at this point he probably already knew that his Late Night show was coming to an end.

    • MikeN' Ike
      MikeN' Ike 23 days ago

      +Joojoo Jurrila wow stuff must really fly over your head alot. It wasn't in reference to a particular show or network, just the late night game in general.

    • Joojoo Jurrila
      Joojoo Jurrila 24 days ago +1

      Well not Late Night he didn't... That show he did pretty much exactly a total of 10 years as he predicted.

  • Thom Majni
    Thom Majni Month ago

    You can tell why, at least I know why, Johnny Carson dumped Dave to the LetterBox.

  • bianchi1885
    bianchi1885 Month ago +1

    True Giants of the television broadcasting industry. I think of the current roster of leftist-agenda spewing, unfunny hacks we are left with these days ... Kimmel (ugh), Colbert (UGH), Fallon (zzzzz), Myers (ZZZZZZZZZZZ). ... and, damn, it's depressing.

  • Larry Hunt
    Larry Hunt Month ago

    That's good stuff!! ↪️⚖️☮️⚖️↩️™

  • Mr. Nunna
    Mr. Nunna Month ago +1

    Letterman is a dink. His humor is predictable & corny. He's treated guests on his show terribly with his superior attitude, making fun of people who didn't deserve it.

  • carl hawkins
    carl hawkins Month ago +2

    carson was great, until the last two or three years and he was horrible, if he bothered to show up at all. it was guest hosted about a third of the time.
    letterman was funny once., as this clip showed. he stopped being funny years before he left.
    oh, and wtf is a Kimmel ?

    NDFOOTBALL Month ago

    Trump 2020

  • Snow Patriot
    Snow Patriot Month ago +6

    Never thought Letterman was funny; Carson is the only real toNight Show......Carson was the best.

  • Richard Miller
    Richard Miller Month ago +1

    Both of these guys owed a lot to the original "Tonight Show" funnyman, Steve Allen. Letterman stole Allen's act, but couldn't steal his talent or wit.

  • Gall ery
    Gall ery Month ago

    Dave, if you'd done the personal appearances and upfronts when *NBC* asked (instead of leaving it to Jay), if you hadn't pretended not to be in when *NBC* executives would visit your office, and if you didn't tell Howard Stern what you really thought about the *NBC* executives who would be deciding Johnny's successor, they might've picked you over Jay.

  • C.S.R
    C.S.R Month ago +1

    Letterman should’ve had
    The Tonight Show!

  • EyesInTheDark1
    EyesInTheDark1 Month ago

    If David Letterman is a decent person, he hides it well.

  • Rick Heagerty
    Rick Heagerty Month ago

    Letterman's last episode was in May, 2015

  • Rick Heagerty
    Rick Heagerty Month ago

    "if they came to me and said, 'Dave, we'd like you to have this show', and then a week later said, 'Dave, we don't want you to have this show', then I'd be angry". Isn't that exactly what they did to Conan?

    • Gall ery
      Gall ery Month ago

      And *NBC* said "Jay, we'll give you "The Tonight Show" if you turn down CBS," and then they offered it to Dave when *he* threatened to go to CBS. That's the way *NBC* rolls and Dave not staying there is the best decision he could've made.

  • Tony P
    Tony P Month ago +4

    I wanted to like Letterman through the years. I tried. I don’t. In fact he’s unwatchable.

  • insulman100
    insulman100 Month ago

    Dave should've said the gravy train is being de-railed

  • DJ Gels
    DJ Gels Month ago +2

    Letterman was a supreme kiss ass...ugh!!!

  • James Oconnor
    James Oconnor Month ago

    Fallon as irish as he is .........🤦‍♂️ oh boy

  • geezusispan
    geezusispan Month ago

    Leno got the job because of his lower IQ sense of humor and to appeal to the older, more conservative crowd.

    • geezusispan
      geezusispan Month ago

      +Gall ery - www.fredericknewspost.com/news/arts_and_entertainment/theater/jay-leno-talks-work-politics-and-stand-up-before-charles/article_19872d57-5c04-5e37-9e5b-6ffe08fe2067.html
      "Sen. John McCain’s funeral. I know you attended, and I was wondering if you were friends with him outside of his appearances on "The Tonight Show?"
      Leno: Oh yeah, we were very good friends, actually. When he ran for president as far back as 2000, we would write jokes for him and stuff. And I had him on the show quite a bit. I know his family, and I guess I was honored he would consider me a friend." Leno was friends with John McCain. Is that conservative enough for you?

    • Gall ery
      Gall ery Month ago +1

      You may think he has a lower IQ sense of humour, but both Carson and Letterman were great admirers of Jay's comedy. And I can't imagine these conservatives you speak of would've been very happy watching Jay's "Tonight Show" when he was mocking George W. Bush for 8 years.

  • bullirish
    bullirish Month ago

    Two pricks.

  • Manuel DeAbreu
    Manuel DeAbreu Month ago +5

    Letterman jumped the shark when he jumped networks. It is too bad. Craig Ferguson has been the best late night host and everyone else has been pathetic.

  • EmeAhG
    EmeAhG Month ago

    I liked them all, but letterman was probably my least favorite of the three. Still, I liked him.

  • Benificent Millipedius

    Letterman -- biggest fool and idiot in show business.

  • Rudy B
    Rudy B Month ago +1

    David is and was an asshole who ceased to be funny when he discovered politics and decided he was relevant.

  • supernikki12100
    supernikki12100 Month ago +2

    I always like Jay Leno, he was good.

  • Chris Brown
    Chris Brown Month ago

    I never knew why my parents felt old w Carson left tv until Letterman went off air. That was a while ago..now im real old. I miss You Letterman. Many tired Highschool mornings because u kept me up! Hope Harry is making you proud too Papa Dave.✌🌐

  • Chris Brown
    Chris Brown Month ago


    • Bob Jones
      Bob Jones Month ago

      We all need more CAPS in our virtual lives, sure...

  • bill webb
    bill webb Month ago

    Never did care for Letterman!

  • Mark James
    Mark James Month ago

    Jay Leno was the best choice.

    • Gall ery
      Gall ery Month ago

      Yes, in the long run Jay did prove to be the better choice to host "The Tonight Show", and likewise Dave enjoyed a much longer career going to CBS than probably would've if he'd agreed to *NBC's* last minute offer to replace Jay at "The Tonight Show."

  • Brian McD
    Brian McD Month ago

    Letterman was great, second only to Carson -- not a close second, but second is second -- but all his bitching about not getting the show and badmouthing Leno got old. People who enjoy complaining are bores, no matter who they are. That and his talk of politics were the negatives in an otherwise highly entertaining show. Only Letterman and Howard Stern, when he was on the radio, were shows I actually made a note of to watch.

    • Gall ery
      Gall ery Month ago

      Yes, Johnny said an audience enjoys seing a host get annoyed, but they don't like to see them actually get mad, and Dave's continued resentment over Jay getting offered "The Tonight Show" was a real turn off.

  • rcdogman duh
    rcdogman duh Month ago

    7 mins I will never get back

  • John Moffett
    John Moffett Month ago

    Letterman has always been a dick

  • Kodilicious
    Kodilicious Month ago

    The band was upset. You can tell by the lack of rimshots for Dave. LOL!

  • Nick Warhead
    Nick Warhead Month ago

    The voice Dave is doing is the same one he used in the Beavis & Butthead movie..

  • Lev Uretsky
    Lev Uretsky Month ago

    Nothing looks as hideous as an unbuttoned double-breasted suit when standing.
    WHITE SOX with dark pants and dark shoes! Tropical fashion dark tie and the white shirt. NO piece of his messy attire is matching.
    What a peasant! I disrespect people appearing in public especially those who have the MONEY for not dressing PROPERLY, it's low intellect disregarding of personal success. And remember how Madonna made him look dumb at his show. And most strange that for tens of years working with suppose to be intelligent and artistic people no one ever told him that his dressing style is a total mess. Or as I said, he is not really bright and disregard such advises.

  • chuckHart70
    chuckHart70 Month ago +1

    Thumbs up if you actually owned Dave's tie! Sad to say I did!

  • Roger Sizemore
    Roger Sizemore Month ago

    Screw Letterman pompous A$$Hole

  • syxx573
    syxx573 Month ago

    David Letterman was so cool before he got TDS

  • Rocketjay12
    Rocketjay12 Month ago

    Jay was always a douche.

  • Jamyn Shanley
    Jamyn Shanley 2 months ago

    6:25 David Letterman laughs when Carson asks him if he could see himself doing his show for 30 years. Looking back, he hosted late night television talk shows for 33 years, beginning with the February 1, 1982, debut of Late Night with David Letterman on NBC, and ending with the May 20, 2015, broadcast of Late Show with David Letterman on CBS.

  • thomas dolan
    thomas dolan 2 months ago

    simply said, i miss johnny

  • Chris Smith
    Chris Smith 2 months ago

    The liberal asshat talking to the KING of latenight

  • Sancho Ditherson
    Sancho Ditherson 2 months ago

    Don't think Letterman drank yet cool aid yet back then.

  • Esatpircsnart
    Esatpircsnart 2 months ago

    It says a lot about NBC that they would pass over a true comedic genius like David Letterman, in favor of a hack like Jay Leno.

  • mykey no likey
    mykey no likey 2 months ago +1

    Save yourself the time, Dave says NOTHING about Leno. Another bullshit youtube title.

  • alan30189
    alan30189 2 months ago

    I sure miss Johnny Carson.

  • Steven Light
    Steven Light 2 months ago

    Mr. Carson , i.believe left a Lot of his money to charity, for that reason and so oo many yr. Of entertainment. I dont watch these want a bes currently

  • Michael Vanderburg
    Michael Vanderburg 2 months ago +1

    Real laughs from Johnny. Not the fake ones you hear from every late night talk show.

  • Nair Byad
    Nair Byad 2 months ago

    jacka$$ title - didn't say anything about JAY LENO - fawk

  • BuckJones
    BuckJones 2 months ago


  • Hay Stack
    Hay Stack 2 months ago

    Letterman was on fire here lol

  • Easy Rider
    Easy Rider 2 months ago

    Letterman is an absolute ASSHOLE --- I knew him at BSU during 60's .. pure CRAP

  • Nick G
    Nick G 2 months ago

    Was that helium balloon story meant to be funny? I didn't so much as crack a smile.

  • Nick G
    Nick G 2 months ago

    Just look at that ghastly black trousers, black shoes, white socks combo... jesus wept

  • Ryo Amora
    Ryo Amora 2 months ago

    Back when TV wasn't lame and trashy. Carson and Letterman, a class act.

  • ThisIsStupidist
    ThisIsStupidist 2 months ago

    no one ever talks about Leno, who are these leno fans

  • Juke Joint
    Juke Joint 2 months ago

    Dave wears Cashmere socks... true story.

  • BossHoggJDK K
    BossHoggJDK K 2 months ago

    Letterman on Johnny fucking legendary.

  • MrCallipygous
    MrCallipygous 2 months ago

    Letterman wound up hosting a late Night Show longer than Carson. 33 years vs less than 30 for Johnny. And I'll bet he was there for a lot more shows since he didn't have a lot of guest hosts.

  • oceantracks
    oceantracks 2 months ago

    The talk show hosts tonight would have no life at all if it weren't for bashing Trump nightly.

  • Colin Taylor
    Colin Taylor 2 months ago +2

    I’ve always been puzzled how Letterman became a star. Boring, unfunny, two faced cockhead.

  • Randy C
    Randy C 2 months ago +1

    Letterman was funny back when this was recorded, but not after that. He's just an idiot now.

  • Blue In red
    Blue In red 2 months ago


  • Martin M
    Martin M 2 months ago

    I stopped counting the number of comments misusing the word "ironic" to describe the future circumstance that Dave unwittingly foretold about Conan's experience.

  • Sergio M
    Sergio M 2 months ago