'As a comedian, you can't not have disdain for what he's done,' the 'Jimmy Kimmel Live' host says of his competitor.
Beginning January 8, comedian and TV host Jimmy Kimmel's daily late-night talk show on ABC "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" goes head-to-head with Jay Leno's "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" on NBC and David Letterman's "Late Show with David Letterman" on CBS. ABC first made the announcement back in August 2012 that, after a decade in the midnight timeslot, Kimmel would be moved to the coveted 11:30 P.M. time slot to match wits with the two late-night mainstays for the title of "King of Late Night".
In the latest issue of Rolling Stone magazine, Kimmel talked about his promotion to the coveted time slot, his loathing for late-night show host and stand-up comedian Jay Leno, and why Jimmy Fallon is his "most worthy competitor." In the interview, Kimmel didn't hold back on his dislike for Leno.
"Leno hasn't been a good stand-up in 20 years," Kimmel said when asked about the quality of Leno's weekly sets at the Comedy & Magic Club in Los Angeles. "As a comedian, you can't not have disdain for what he's done. He totally sold out."
Kimmel's aversion to Leno started back in 1992 when Leno beat Letterman for the "Tonight Show" gig, with Kimmel feeling that Leno stole the show from his idol Letterman. Over the years, Kimmel has gotten over his disdain for Leno only to be upset by the gray-haired comedian once again when he got sweet-talked by the "Tonight Show" host into giving-up his midnight timeslot to make way for Leno's 11:30 P.M. hour-long ABC late night show.
Kimmel's hit talk show had solid ratings last year with a special guest appearance by First Lady Michelle Obama in October and a visit by Kimmel's hero David Letterman on Halloween. Kimmel also had a banner year in 2012 when he hosted the primetime Emmy Awards in September and was the headliner at the White House Correspondents' dinner back in April.