Friday, December 17, 2010

After 25 Years, Larry King Signs Off

Joined by a dozen of his favorite guests over the decades, Larry King hosted his final edition of “Larry King Live” on Thursday, ending a 25-year chapter at CNN.

According to Brian Stetler, Media Decorder at, the suspenders will remain, he said, but his nightly forum for newsmakers and noisemakers will not. He said at the beginning of the program, “Welcome to the last ‘Larry King Live.’ It’s hard to say that. I knew this day was coming. These words are not easy to say.”

Mr. King, a television icon, announced in June that he had decided to step down from the program, which defined a generation of cable news and inspired an generation of interviewers. The ratings for “Larry King Live” had fallen sharply in recent years. In about a month “Piers Morgan Tonight” will take over the 9 p.m. time slot on CNN.

Mr. King, 77, will host specials four times a year for CNN, and he is exploring other on- and off-air opportunities. Said Bill Maher, a longtime friend of Mr. King’s, on the program, “This is the end of the show, not the end of a man.”

All sorts of stars came on “Larry King Live” on Thursday to praise Mr. King. The “NBC Nightly News” anchor Brian Williams said the program had been “America’s kind of confessional,” and the “American Idol” host Ryan Seacrest said Mr. King is “such a tremendous guy with a great heart.”

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