Jay Leno’s final show after 22 years was emotional and even had us a little teary.
Leno was given a musical farewell by a host of celebrities including Billy Crystal, Kim Kardashian, Jack Black, Carol Burnett Oprah, and more!
In his monologue, Leno promised that this was “for real” his last show. He joked, “I don’t need to be fired three times – I get the hint”.
Billy Crystal broke out a few jokes about his old friend’s time as the host of the “Tonight Show”.
He said, “When it was announced recently that America’s No. 1 terrorist had been captured, who told us it was Justin Bieber? You did. When Hurricane Katrina hit, who told us they should rename it the Persian Gulf so Bush would send troops faster? You did.”
Crystal then got serious, telling Leno that his stint as the late night host helped America feel a little better at bedtime.
He said, “You were handed the baton by one of the all-time greats. But once it was in your grasp, you ran the race”.
Oprah Winfrey, Jack Black, Kim Kardashian and Billy Crystal were among the stars who performed an adapted version of “So Long, Farewell”.
Jack Black referenced Fallon, singing, “So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, goodbye. If Fallon tanks, you’ll be back here next year”.
Oprah Winfrey had a great line, singing, “So long, farewell, you really raised the bar. If you were me, you’d buy them all a car”.
Celebrities like Martha Stewart, Tyler Perry and Matt Damon who couldn’t make it to the taping, sent their well-wishes to Leno in a video advising him on what to do next in his career.
He said, “I want to thank you — the audience. You folks have been just incredibly loyal…We wouldn’t be on the air without you people.”
He started to cry as he said the last 22 years had been the best of his life.
He said, “I am the luckiest guy in the world. I got to meet presidents and astronauts and movie stars. It’s just been incredible”.
Leno then went on to describe how he lost his mother the first year of his show, his father the next, and his brother after that.
But Leno ended on a positive note, saying he was excited to see what Jimmy Fallon would do with the show.
“It’s fun to be the old guy and see where the next generation takes this great institution. I’m so glad I got to be a part of it, but it really is time to go and hand it to the next guy. And, in conclusion, I want to quote Johnny Carson: ‘I bid you all a heartfelt good night’.”