Back in January 2005, Craig Ferguson was an odd choice to host a late night talk show. Now that he’s been at it for over 30 months, Ferguson seems like the perfect guy for the job. So why would he want to quit?
A few years back, most only knew Ferguson from his supporting role as boss Nigel Wick on The Drew Carey Show but castmates knew he had far more talent than that. Though Ferguson usually only had a few lines per episode, he made good use of his free time. Carey once noted that while others were in their trailers watching TV or goofing off, Ferguson was writing movies that he could direct and star in. Carey concluded, “If anybody needed a show named after him, it was Craig Ferguson.” Ferguson got one when he was chosen to host the The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on CBS.
In the past two and a half years, Ferguson has grown as a host and has found his own style. He initially opened the show with a scripted monologue but realized that it ultimately didn’t work very well. He now simply improvises a chat about his life or current events. This could be a terribly boring move in the hands of a less-skilled performer, but Ferguson’s show is often the most entertaining of the late night chatfests. As a host, he’s about as close to Johnny Carson as you’re likely to find today. It’s for this reason that the thought of his quitting is so upsetting.
Ferguson recently spoke to the St. Petersburg Times and indicated that he may be leaving the late night show when his six-year contract expires. Unlike many, it seems he doesn’t care for the fame that comes with his high-profile job. He explains, “I just don’t know if I like being that visible,” he said. “I don’t know if I would want to ramp that up any more, you know. And people here find that, I think, quite difficult to [understand].”
Ferguson still has more than three years left on his contract so there’s certainly plenty of time for him to change his mind. For the sake of late night television, let’s hope he does. Stay tuned!