Industry insiders allegedly knew of the deal for months now as PR teams worked to have Williams tenure at NBC smoothly transition to a ‘comedy-based format’ where the scandal involved in his reason for leaving NBC could be minimized.
Williams’ ability to consistently demand a late night viewing audience will bode well for the Daily Show. Nielsen demographics show that NBC Nightly News consistently beat out its nearest competitor, ABC’s World News Tonight, by 600,000 viewers.
NBC late night host, Jimmy Fallon, did hilarious mix-ups of Williams performing rap as a test format to gauge viewer response to Brian Williams performing comedic antics. Population sampling showed that the audience responded favorably to such skits and it served as evidence that Brian Williams will be able to engage a comedic-news seeking demographic in a favorable manner.
Stewart let slip that his retirement is eminent, forcing today’s confirmation by Comedy Central heads, but Stewart’s last day in the anchor seat before the show transfers to Brian Williams is yet unknown.
Thank you Jon. pic.twitter.com/yPdxjnkuLw
— Comedy Central (@ComedyCentral) February 10, 2015