Jon Stewart to leave The Daily Show

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Jon Stewart has announced he will step down as host from Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, later this year.

The comedian made the shock announcement during a taping of the show on Tuesday night.  Stewart, who has been host of The Daily Show for 17 years, described his job as an absolute privilege.

It has not been confirmed when the comedian will be leaving, but is thought to be between July and December this year. The  late night, satire show is known best as a news source for a younger generation with an average audience of one million viewers.

Comedy Central took to their Twitter account to acknowledge Jon and his work over the last two decades, describing him as part of their family “The Daily Show has become a cultural touchstone for millions of fans and an unparalleled platform for political comedy that will endure for years to come”.

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Stewart has had several high profile guests on the show from politicians, including Barack Obama in 2012, to celebrities such as Jennifer Lopez and George Clooney. Famous fans have taken to Twitter to express their sadness on Stewart’s departure from the show.

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The show launched the careers of many successful comedians such as Steve Carell and John Oliver, who is one of the potential replacements for Stewart. Other candidates rumoured for the job include Chris Rock, Ricky Gervais and Amy Poehler.

Stewart has no plans for his career after his departure, but has said he is looking forward to spending time with his family on a school night.