David Letterman

American comedian and television host

David Michael Letterman (born April 12, 1947) is an American television host and comedian.[1] He currently hosts My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman on Netflix. He hosted the late night television talk show Late Show with David Letterman on CBS. Letterman also hosted Late Night with David Letterman on NBC. In 2013, Letterman surpassed friend and mentor Johnny Carson as the longest-serving late-night talk show host in TV history, at 35 years.[2]

David Letterman
Letterman at the Peabody Awards in May 2016
Birth nameDavid Michael Letterman
Born (1947-04-12) April 12, 1947 (age 77)
Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S.
MediumStand-up, television
Years active1970–present
GenresObservational comedy, surreal humor, deadpan
InfluencesJohnny Carson, Paul Dixon, Steve Allen, Jack Paar
InfluencedJimmy Kimmel, Jim Gaffigan, Jon Stewart, Conan O'Brien, Jimmy Fallon
SpouseMichelle Cook (1968–1977; divorced)
Regina Lasko (2009–present,
1 child)
Notable works and rolesThe David Letterman Show
(host, 1980)
Late Night with David Letterman
(host, 1982-1993)
Late Show with David Letterman
(host, 1993-2015)
Emmy Awards
Outstanding Host or Hostess in a Variety Series
1981 The David Letterman Show
Outstanding Individual Achievement – Writers
1981 The David Letterman Show
Outstanding Writing in a Variety or Music Program
1984, 1985, 1986, 1987 Late Night with David Letterman
Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Series
1994, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002 Late Show with David Letterman
American Comedy Awards
Funniest Male Performer in a TV Special (Leading or Supporting) Network, Cable or Syndication
1989 Late Night with David Letterman
1995 Late Show with David Letterman: Video Special
Funniest Male Performer in a TV Series (Leading Role) Network, Cable or Syndication
1994 Late Show with David Letterman
2001 Late Show with David Letterman

Letterman's ironic comedy is similar to comedians such as Andy Kaufman, Ernie Kovacs, and Tonight Show hosts Johnny Carson and Steve Allen.

Early life and career


Letterman was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. His father, Harry Joseph Letterman,[3] was a florist of English ancestry; his mother Dorothy Letterman, a church secretary of German ancestry, has been an occasional figure on the show, usually at holidays and birthdays.

He lived on the north side of Indianapolis, not far from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. He enjoyed collecting model cars, including racers.[4] In 2000, he told an interviewer for Esquire that, while growing up, he admired his father's ability to tell jokes and be the life of the party. Harry Joseph Letterman survived a heart attack at age 36, when David was a young boy. The fear of losing his father was constantly with Letterman as he grew up.[5] The elder Letterman died of a second heart attack[6] at age 57.


  1. "David Letterman Biography". The New York Times. Retrieved 2014-01-12.
  2. "CBS Extends David Letterman Contract Through 2015". Hollywoodreporter.com. 2013-10-04. Retrieved 2014-01-12.
  3. Record of Harry Letterman, Social Security Death Index
  4. Gary Graves. "Letterman Gets Moment in Hot Seat." USA Today, May 23, 2005, p. 1C.
  5. "Dave Letterman Profile - Interview with David Letterman". Esquire. 2009-10-02. Retrieved 2014-01-12.
  6. Mitchell Fink, Eric Mink, Leo Standora, Richard Huff, Bill Hutchinson (January 14, 2000). "Cholesterol high, has family history". New York Daily News. Retrieved January 12, 2014.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)

Other websites


  Media related to David Letterman at Wikimedia Commons

Preceded by
Host of Late Night
Succeeded by
Conan O'Brien
Preceded by
Host of The Late Show
Succeeded by
Stephen Colbert