The last time that David Letterman was on The Late Show was May 20, 2015. Exactly eight and a half years later, the long-time late night host returns to the Ed Sullivan Theater for the first time as a guest on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, as he is the main guest for the Monday, November 20, episode that airs at 11:35 pm ET/PT on CBS.
Letterman was the host of The Late Show from August 1993 to May 2015 and became a beloved TV figure, with bits like his top 10 lists and some truly memorable celebrity interactions (Drew Barrymore climbing on top of his desk and Joaquin Phoenix's commitment to his rapper ploy chief among them).
Since Letterman left The Late Show he has hosted the Netflix show My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, where he does in-depth interviews with some of the biggest names in entertainment and culture, like Barack Obama, Jay-Z, Malala Yousafazi, Will Smith, Billie Eilish and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. The latest edition, My Next Guest Needs No Introduction season 4, is available to stream on Netflix right now along with the first three seasons.
It won't just be David Letterman appearing on the November 20 episode of The Late Show though, as the show will also feature a musical performance by the band The National. Apparently, Letterman reached out to The National himself and asked them to appear with him on the show. Letterman's love for the band is on the record, jokingly (in an endearing way) describing them as "your saddest friend's favorite band."
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert knows that Letterman's return is a big deal, as Colbert himself shared the news during the November 16 episode of the late night talk show.
This man is no stranger to The Ed Sullivan Theater! The legendary David @Letterman is returning to The Late Show for the first time for a rare conversation with @StephenAtHome!Don’t miss #Colbert on @CBS this MONDAY, Nov. 20 at 11:35/10:35c. pic.twitter.com/dPxbUFcg18November 17, 2023
Colbert of course was the one who took over The Late Show directly after Letterman stepped down, so it should be fun to see the two hosts talk about the job they've shared.
Letterman is just the first big name guest to be appearing on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert the week of November 20. On Tuesday, November 21, Bradley Cooper, whose Maestro premieres in movie theaters on November 22, is on the show along with world-famous chef José Andrés, who will be giving a cooking demo ahead of Thanksgiving on Thursday, November 23. Then on Wednesday, November 22, The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes star Peter Dinklage and comedian Tig Notaro are set to appear.
Wednesday, November 22, is going to be the last new show of the week for The Late Show with Stephen Colbert because of the holiday.
Anyone with a traditional pay-TV subscription, TV antenna or live TV streaming service that carries CBS (Fubo, Hulu with Live TV or YouTube TV among them), can watch The Late Show with Stephen Colbert live at 11:35 pm ET/PT. Paramount Plus with Showtime subscribers can also watch a livestream of the show, while the streaming service also has all episodes available on-demand the day after they air.