The Nightly Show: Larry Wilmore Stands Out, Fits In

“Our show is more of a conversation about an issue...Not every topic is going to be a laugh generating topic.”


Larry Wilmore, host of 'The Nightly Show'

Larry Wilmore wants to make his new show definitive.

“It’s the best thing you can do,” he says. “Jon [Stewart] wasn’t the first person to host THE DAILY SHOW, but people don’t remember that because he made it so definitive.”

THE NIGHTLY SHOW will give Wilmore, 53, his first foray in hosting a regular late-night program.

“THE DAILY SHOW created a whole new genre, in a sense, in late night,” he told TV critics in Los Angeles last week.

“And that continued with Colbert, and we just recently did @MIDNIGHT. And we really feel like THE NIGHTLY SHOW is really a continuation of that tradition.”

Wilmore’s show was originally called THE MINORITY REPORT but producers changed the title after FOX developed a pilot of the 2002 film MINORITY REPORT.

“I started liking it,” he recalls. “I realized, Wow, DAILY SHOW, NIGHTLY SHOW, @MIDNIGHT. It even works in that sense too.”

The show is a mixture of formats, including segments featuring Wilmore and a panel of guests.

“THE DAILY SHOW is more about reporting on reporting,” he says.

“Our show is more of a conversation about an issue. We’ll definitely have celebrities on, but they won’t be on hocking books or movies. We want to get people on who are interesting to us and who seem like they fit in this conversation for that particular day.”

“If you’re watching THE DAILY SHOW and it feels like it’s getting a little darker, you’re probably watching THE NIGHTLY SHOW,” the first time host jokes.

Wilmore is not just THE DAILY SHOW’s former Senior Black Correspondent.

He is an Emmy award-winning writer and producer whose career includes work on THE BERNIE MAC SHOW and THE OFFICE, among others.

“Not every topic is going to be a laugh generating topic,” Wilmore says.

“You have to judge which ones you want to put on your show that day and which topics are going to be more ripe for discussion later… but even if we’re talking about provocative things, you have to approach it with some fun and some levity. Because at the end of the day, we’re doing a comedy show.”

THE NIGHTLY SHOW premieres January 19th at 11:30 PM ET on Comedy Central

Blake Stilwell

Blake Stilwell

Blake Stilwell is a writer and adventurer who loves television, film, and international relations. He is a former military combat photojournalist who has worked for ABC News, NBC Olympics, and HBO. Based in New York, often found elsewhere.
Blake Stilwell