On October 23rd, 1925, the legendary late-night host Johnny Carson was born. Johnny was a comedian, writer, and producer, but he was best known for ‘The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson,’ which ran for 30 years from 1962 to 1992.
Johnny received 6 Emmy Awards and the Peabody Award for his work on the show. He was inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in 1987 and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1992.
‘The Tonight Show’ was the franchise’s third version, debuting in 1962. Ed McMahon served as Johnny’s faithful comedic sidekick. Previous show hosts were Steve Allen and Jack Paar.
Johnny’s best guests over the years included comedian Don Rickles, who once pranked Frank Sinatra on the show! Johnny’s audience always loved Jonathan Winters and, of course, Robin Williams.
You never knew where the interview was going with those two. Another guest who stole the spotlight was Jim Carrey, who thrilled Johnny with his fabulous impersonations of famous stars.
Some of Johnny’s best guests weren’t even human. He was often visited by baby monkeys, orangutans, and other wildlife. Many would climb on his head or up his back. Johnny’s reaction to these animals was priceless.
‘The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson’ was an incredible part of American culture, and Johnny was loved by everyone. His charisma, charm, and comedic timing made each broadcast must-watch TV.