Haute 100 LA Update: Jay Leno Spends Last Evening on The Tonight Show

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Photo:  Jeff Riedel:NBC
Photo: Jeff Riedel:NBC

It’s the end of an era.

Last night marked Jay Leno’s final evening on “The Tonight Show” after 22 years as its host.

In typical fashion, Jay went out with a bang before passing the torch to the program’s new host, Jimmy Fallon.

He tapped the very first guest when the show started in 1992 – Billy Crystal – to be his last. He also cherry-picked his favorite singer – Garth Brooks – to send him off in style.

Oprah Winfrey, Carol Burnett and Kim Kardashian hammed their way through skits about his departure, while even President Obama paid his respects to the longtime late night host in a taped message.)

He didn’t slam NBC, the network who replaced him after more than two decades, but simply, and naturally, got emotional on his last evening, explaining why he never left for a rival network like ABC or Fox. “I didn’t know anybody over there,” he said. “These are the only people I’ve ever known.”

In the end, Jay didn’t say goodbye, which is far too permanent. He closed his last show with the words: “I bid you all a heartfelt goodnight.”

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