“Simply being a guest on David Letterman’s show has been a highlight of my career,” Colbert said in a press release. “I never dreamed that I would follow in his footsteps, though everyone in late night follows Dave’s lead.”
“I’m thrilled and grateful that CBS chose me. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go grind a gap in my front teeth," he added.
Colbert will take the helm of the late-night program once Letterman retires in 2015. The comedian signed a five-year agreement with the network.
CBS reportedly discussed the position with Jon Stewart as well, but Stewart told Vulture the day before the announcement that he wasn't quite up to the task. Colbert would be a "remarkable" successor to Letterman's late-night throne, he said.
This post has been updated.