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Say goodnight to Leno, hello to Fallon

Fallon takes Leno’s seat on “The Tonight Show,” but brings elements of “Late Night” along with him.

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Say goodnight to Leno, hello to Fallon

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Jesus Ambrosio, Assistant Diversions Editor

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A new and exciting era of late night television will begin tonight as Jimmy Fallon takes over Jay Leno’s gig at “The Tonight Show.”

With the change, Fallon is also taking “The Tonight Show” back to New York for the first time since 1972 when Johnny Carson was the host.

Fallon is not new to the television scene, beginning in 1998 he spent six years at “Saturday Night Live.” Four of his SNL years he spent as co-anchor for the Weekend Update segment with Tina Fey.

Over the years, Fallon had several other roles in television and even tried to pursue a film career. However, his film career never took off, and he was somewhat fortunate that he was able to take over “Late Night with Conan O’Brien” in 2009 when O’Brien left the show.

Before Fallon moves into the next phase of his television career, it’s hard to forget the past five years he spent was hosting of his own show, “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.”

Fallon’s time on “Late Night” was full of musical moments. When Justin Timberlake was a guest, it was not uncommon for them to stop mid-interview and perform a bit called “The History of Rap,” in which they performed a medley of popular hip-hop tunes.

Fallon’s show featured viral classics like the mash-ups of NBC Nightly News’ Brian Williams rapping songs like “Regulate” by Warren G and “Straight outta Compton” by N.W.A.

In fact, there were so many musical moments that some were featured on the studio album “Blow Your Pants Off,” a compilation album of recordings from “Late Night,” including Rebecca Black’s “Friday” as performed by Jimmy Fallon and Stephen Colbert.

Fallon also used his spot- on impression talents from SNL, which transferred well to “Late Night” and were used in both sketches and running gags.

Now it’s time for Fallon to bring his antics to the “Tonight Show” and just like he did with “Late Night,” he will likely make it his own. His house band, The Roots, and his sidekick Steve Higgins will also be making the transition with him so hopefully we don’t see too much of a change.

One thing that is sure to change is the audience; Fallon is young, witty, and charming and will definitely be attracting younger viewers. The surge of the next generation of viewers will create a rivalry for ratings between Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel and David Letterman.

Fallon’s inaugural show will include Will Smith and musical guest U2. Other guests throughout the inaugural week include Kristen Wigg, Will Ferrell, Bradley Cooper, Jerry Seinfeld and Michelle Obama. Musical guests will include Lady Gaga, Tim McGraw and Arcade Fire.

Seth Meyers, who has been at SNL for the past 13 years and was also Weekend Update anchor, will take over Fallon’s “Late Night” job starting Feb. 24.

“The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon” will air weeknights at midnight due to the Olympics but should return to its usual slot at 11:35 p.m. on Feb. 24.

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