Sounds like we shouldn’t expect to see Jay Leno sitting behind the desk on a late-night talk show anytime soon — or, perhaps, ever again.
“It seems like 100 years ago, and it feels like yesterday,” the 68-year-old recently told Us Weekly of his time on The Tonight Show. “I don’t really [miss it]. I loved it when I did it. But, at some point, you can’t keep pretending you know all of Jay-Z‘s music.”
He added: “When you get to be my age, [it’s like,] ‘Oh yeah, right, right.’ I’m at the point now where I’m hearing oldies I didn’t hear the first time. That’s an oldie now? I didn’t even hear it when it came out in ’98. No, I missed it. So that’s where it’s at.”
“TV is basically a young person’s game,” he explained, further explaining why we won’t see him back. “You do it for as long as you can, and then you hand it off. Handing it off to Jimmy was a great thrill.”
“We don’t hate each other,” Jay told host Andy Cohen of David Letterman. “The media makes a big thing about it. I am a huge fan. You know, when I started, Letterman was a great wordsmith. He could put things together, but he’s kind of a hesitant performer. I was a very loud, boisterous performer, but I wasn’t that good a writer. So I’d watch him and go, ‘Oh, man, how do you put those sentences together?’ And he’d watch me and go, ‘How can you be so confident on stage?’ So I think we sort of took from each other a little bit.”
As for Conan, 55, who NBC asked to move back in time slots to accommodate Jay in 2009 (Conan refused), Jay doesn’t have any regrets. “It’s not your decision. People act like it’s your decision … the network makes these decisions,” he said. “They decide you’re going to leave and then they decide when you’re gonna come back. So, there is not a lot different I would have done.”
We’ll just have to get our fix of Jay when we watch him on Jay Leno’s Garage.