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Jon Stewart: Fake News Icon and Daily Show Host

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Jon Stewart, host of The Daily Show and the 2006 Oscars
Comedy Central

From New York Comedy Clubs to the Oscars:

Born Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz in New York City in 1962, Jon Stewart honed his comedic chops in New York City comedy clubs before hitting it big with his own talk show on MTV. Unfortunately, that show flopped, but Stewart found his groove as host of The Daily Show.

The Daily Show's hilarious take on politics and the news have made Stewart a national icon. His fame has scored him gigs hosting The Grammys and The Oscars as well as the opportunity to smack down Tucker Carlson on live TV.

Jon Stewart -- The Early Years:

Stewart grew up in New Jersey and attended The College of William and Mary in Virginia. After graduation, he moved back home to New Jersey, where he worked at a series of jobs (including puppeteer and NJ Department of Health number cruncher). In 1986, Stewart made the move to New York City to pursue a comedy career. He soon became a regular on the New York comedy club circuit.

Jon Stewart -- TV Star:

Stewart’s comedy soon led to a job as host of Comedy Central’s Short Attention Span Theater. The show didn’t last long, but it helped Stewart catch MTV’s attention. In 1993, MTV launched The Jon Stewart Show, which garnered positive reviews and a syndication deal. Unfortunately, low ratings led to the show’s cancellation in 1995.

Jon Stewart -- Movie Star and Author:

After the show ended, Stewart spent some time focusing on acting, appearing in films such as First Wives’ Club and Playing By Heart. He also wrote a bestselling book, Naked Pictures of Famous People and guest-starred on numerous TV shows.

Jon Stewart -- Host With the Most:

But Stewart couldn’t stay away from hosting for long. Over the next few years, he was a frequent guest host for The Late, Late Show With Tom Snyder and a frequent fictional guest host for The Larry Sanders Show.

Jon Stewart -- The Daily Show:

In 1999, Stewart was selected to replace Craig Kilborn as host of The Daily Show. The show has made Jon Stewart a national icon – they even renamed the program as The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. As a writer, producer, and the host of the show, Stewart is both an Emmy winner and a Peabody Award winner. He was also named as “America’s Best Talk Show Host” by Time and as one of “People Magazine’s 50 Most Beautiful People.”

Jon Stewart -- Crossfire and Beyond:

Stewart’s success has led to real power and authority for a fake newsman. His controversial and highly entertaining appearance on CNN’s Crossfire helped prompt the cancellation of the show. Meanwhile, Stewart has also parlayed his fame into prestigious hosting jobs for the Grammy Awards and, most recently, the 2006 Academy Awards. His personal life has also been eventful – Stewart and his wife recently welcomed their second child.

Great Jon Stewart Quotes:


"You're as big a dick on your show as you are on any show."
— to Tucker Carlson on CNN’s Crossfire

“I feel your scorn and I accept it.”
—after a joke bombed during the 2001 Grammy Award telecast

“If you watch the news and don't like it, then this is your counter program to the news.”
—describing The Daily Show’s appeal

“Don’t cross Lorenzo Lamas. Ever.”
—offering valuable advice for young and old

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