Late night host Jimmy Kimmel says he was ready to retire before the WGA strike began. However, he told listeners of the Strike Force Five podcast he has had a change of heart. “I was very intent on retiring right around the time where the strike started,” Kimmel explained. “And now, I realize, oh yeah, it’s kind of nice to work. You know, when you are working, you think about not working.”
Jimmy Kimmel says he was planning to retire just before the writers’ strike began.
Fellow late night host Seth Meyers, who launched the Strike Force Five podcast with Kimmel, Jimmy Fallon, Stephen Colbert, and John Oliver, then told Kimmel, “C’mon, you are the Tom Brady of late night… You have feigned retirement…. Are we to take you at your word?” But Kimmel remained steadfast about his previous thoughts on retirement.
“I was serious, I was very, very serious,” Jimmy Kimmel continued via The Hollywood Reporter. The last night host explained that he enjoys having summers away from his show each year. However, he prefers getting paid over getting the summer off. Had Kimmel opted to retire before the strike, it would have been complicated due to his show getting a three-year contract extension in 2022.
The contract ensured the continuation of Jimmy Kimmel Live! until its 23rd season. In a statement back then, the host humorously said, “After two decades at ABC, I am now looking forward to three years of what they call quiet quitting.” The five late night hosts’ podcast, which debuted on August 30, will benefit staff impacted by the ongoing strikes and consists of 12 episodes.
“I was very intent on retiring right around the time where the strike started. And now, I realize, oh yeah, it’s kind of nice to work. You know, when you are working, you think about not working.”-Jimmy Kimmel
Jimmy Kimmel Live! premiered on ABC on January 26, 2003, and has since become a prominent fixture in the late-night television landscape. During his time hosting the late night talk show, Kimmel gained a reputation for his unique comedic style, which often includes a blend of satirical humor and witty monologues.
The show is known for its segments, such as “Mean Tweets,” where celebrities read mean or funny tweets about themselves, and “Lie Witness News,” where Jimmy Kimmel’s team interviews people on the street about fictional events to gauge their responses. The monologues often touch on current events, making his show not only a source of entertainment but also a platform for commentary.
Throughout his tenure as the host of the show, Jimmy Kimmel has interviewed a wide range of celebrity guests, from actors and musicians to politicians and athletes. He has also incorporated heartfelt and emotional moments into his show, such as when he openly discussed his son’s health issues, which helped raise awareness about healthcare policies in the United States.
“After two decades at ABC, I am now looking forward to three years of what they call quiet quitting.”-Jimmy Kimmel
Due to the ongoing strikes in Hollywood, it is unclear when Jimmy Kimmel Live! will return with new episodes. Television and film writers belonging to the Writers Guild of America downed tools in May due to the union’s inability to negotiate a new contract with studios and streaming platforms. Consequently, the late-night shows, which depend on writers for creating comedic content, went dark.
Similarly, SAG-AFTRA, the union representing 160,000 actors and performers, also went on strike in July after encountering difficulties in attaining a new contractual agreement with major studios. Key sticking points in the deadlock include better wages, residuals from streaming services, and the use of artificial intelligence. Both unions remain committed to their demands, with no end in sight for the strike.