After weeks of wondering, it is finally official: James Corden will follow up Craig Ferguson as the host of “The Late Late Show.” The British comic / writer will debut his new series at some point in 2015, and he will be a part of a lineup that also includes Stephen Colbert, transitioning over from “The Colbert Report.”
In their statement, you could almost tell that CBS programming head Nina Tassler knew that eyebrows would raise at the idea of a relative unknown to most American audiences coming over and trying to entertain in one of the most pressure-cooker environments out there.
“James Corden is a rare entertainment force who combines irresistible charm, warmth and originality with a diverse range of creative instincts and performance talent … He is the ultimate multi-hyphenate – a writer, creator and performer who is loved and respected in every medium he touches, including theater, comedy, music, film and television.
“…James is already a big star in the U.K. and he’s wowed American audiences on Broadway. We’re very excited to introduce his considerable and very unique talents to our network television audience on a daily basis.”
One word that we would very much use to describe this shift over right now for “The Late Late Show” is counter-programming, given that this may be a brilliant move on their part in order to ensure that they have someone who could be their version of Jimmy Fallon. Think about this: You’ve got more of a sketch comic in Fallon up against Colbert, who can certainly do that but also is tremendous at one-liners. Meanwhile, you are putting Corden up against a much more traditional comic in Seth Meyers. Maybe James will figure out a way to make some of his sketches appeal to the internet world, and CBS can get a larger piece of that pie.
What do you think: Could Corden be a great late-night host based on the limited information you have? Share in the comments.