NEW YORK -- CBS is expected to name former
MTV talk-show host Jon Stewart to front a late-night show challenging
NBC's Later series. Stewart's show will air opposite
Later weekdays at 12:35 a.m. on WBBM-Channel 2 and will
be produced by David Letterman's World Wide Pants production
company. The company already produces Letterman's 10:35 p.m.
show and Late Late Show With Tom Snyder at 11:35 p.m.
for CBS. The new show will begin airing in late 1997.
Sources said that Stewart, 33, has been told
that he will get Snyder's earlier time slot when Snyder retires.
Snyder, 60, has renewed his contract for another year, the sources
said, and CBS is planning to announce the renewal along with the
signing of Stewart this week. CBS declined comment.
According to sources, Stewart was close to signing
with NBC to take over Later for Kinnear, who has a film
career, until Letterman called to urge him to do a show at CBS.
Stewart recently filled in as a guest host on Later, which
follows Late Night With Conan O'Brien. NBC executives could
not be reached.
Stewart is a stand-up comedian who gained national
attention when MTV gave him a talk show. The program was reworked
by Paramount to replace Arsenio Hall's syndicated series. It premiered
in the fall of 1994, but it failed to make a dent in the ratings,
and the studio pulled the plug 10 months after it began.
Snyder's CBS show began in 1995. A longtime
NBC host, Snyder was hosting a late-night show on the CNBC cable
network when Letterman asked him to do a show for CBS.