The world of late-night television has had an interesting evolution during the COVID-19 pandemic, with hosts continuing to do shows from the comfort of their own homes, in order to avoid social distancing. One of the programs that has been particularly creative with that has been Jimmy Kimmel Live -- and it sounds like it will soon be getting creative again. On Thursday, Kimmel announced that he will be taking a brief hiatus from hosting the series, in order to take a breather. ABC's plan is reportedly to have guest hosts fill Kimmel's place beginning on Monday, July 6th.
“There’s nothing wrong, I’m healthy, my family’s healthy, I just need a couple of months off,” Kimmel said in a statement.
“While Jimmy’s gone a cavalcade of very kind and capable people will be filling in,” the show said in a statement, although specific names have not yet been announced. While it's unclear exactly how long Kimmel will be away from the series, he is confirmed to host the Emmy Awards on September 20th.
The announcement of Kimmel's summer sabbatical was courtesy of a video on Thursday, which also featured Kimmel's long-time "nemesis", Matt Damon.
“What am I going to do? I haven’t been on, I’ve been back here, three months, waiting to get on,” Damon jokes in the video.
This isn't the first time that Kimmel has briefly stepped away from the series, as he took time off in 2017 while his infant son underwent multiple open-heart surgeries. In May that year, Will Arnett, Anthony Anderson, Kristen Bell, and David Spade filled in; then in November, it was Shaquille O’Neal, Dave Grohl, Channing Tatum and Jennifer Lawrence, and in December, Chris Pratt, Tracee Ellis Ross, Neil Patrick Harris, and Melissa McCarthy. Brie Larson also filled in for Kimmel when he hosted ABC's Live in Front of a Studio Audience last December.
“As the crisis continues to rapidly develop across the nation, by airing one-hour earlier, Nightline will reach even more people with the important context, analysis and expert insight Americans want to stay informed and safe during this uncertain time,” ABC News said in announcing the shift.
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