Stephen Colbert, the host of the widely-popular half-hour political satire show The Colbert Report on Comedy Central, is headed to CBS.

Colbert will succeed long-time The Late Show host David Letterman, who announced on April 3 his intention to retire next year. Letterman has served as host for 21 years.

CBS announced the news in a tweet at noon on Thursday:

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Colbert agreed to a five-year deal with the network, but the financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

The announcement was made by Leslie Moonves, president and CEO of CBS, and Nina Tassler, chairman of CBS Entertainment.

“Simply being a guest on David Letterman’s show has been a highlight of my career,” Colbert said. “I never dreamed that I would follow in his footsteps, though everyone in late night follows Dave’s lead.”

“I’m thrilled and grateful that CBS chose me,” he added. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go grind a gap in my front teeth.”   

Moonves singled out the comedian for being “one of the most inventive and respected forces on television.”

The Colbert Report, which launched in 2005, has won two Peabody Awards and an Emmy in 2013 for Outstanding Variety Series. The show has earned a total of 27 Emmy nominations.

Prior to hosting The Colbert Report, Colbert spent nearly a decade as a correspondent on Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show.

CBS has yet to announce the date of Letterman’s final show.

“David Letterman’s legacy and accomplishments are an incredible source of pride for all of us here,” said Moonves, “and today’s announcement speaks to our commitment of upholding what he established for CBS in late night.”


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