After nearly 40 years of reporting the news, on Friday, “Entertainment Tonight” is making it.
The four-time Emmy Award-winning show has claimed the Guinness World Record for the longest-running entertainment news TV show. The award is based on the amount of time a series has been on the air. To date, “ET” has officially broadcast for 38 years and 118 days, debuting on Sept. 14, 1981.
“That’s crazy,” “Entertainment Tonight” host Kevin Frazier said of being honored in the Guinness Book of World Records.
“As a kid who grew up reading that book — before the internet and all that — you laughed at the crazy records and marveled at the big ones,” he continued. “So it’s mind-blowing and the greatest of honors.”
For comparison’s sake, “Jeopardy” (on the air since 1984) reached its 8,000 episodes milestone in October 2019, while the Guinness Book record-holder for the longest-running TV show is “Meet the Press,” which debuted in 1948.
“10,000 episodes ago, ‘ET’ blazed a trail inventing the entertainment news genre,” executive producer Erin Johnson added. “Our archive is unmatched thanks to stars inviting us along for their wild ride into superstardom. We’ve been there for their ups and their downs, and we’re so grateful they’ve trusted us to tell their stories.”
And though the honor is a massive professional achievement for the team, it’s also a very personal one.
“I’ve never lived in a world without ‘ET,’ and I never want to. I grew up watching this show as a pop culture-obsessed kid, and it was no secret to anyone in my small Ohio town that I wanted to one day work at ‘Entertainment Tonight,’” Johnson said. “I have my dream job with a dream team.”
Friday’s broadcast included exclusive interviews with Oprah Winfrey and Rod Stewart and a look back at the near 40-year history of the series. In addition to shoutouts from stars like Jennifer Lopez and Adam Sandler, the 10,000th episode featured a big celebration for the staff that works tirelessly to put the show together. Toasting with champagne and a massive cake that replicated the Los Angeles set, Team ET is looking to the future.
“We have our amazing viewers to thank for our longevity. We know that being invited into someone’s home night after night is a privilege,” Johnson said. “Thank you for making us the #1 entertainment news brand in the world. We can’t wait to keep bringing you closer to your favorite stars for another 10,000 episodes and beyond because if it’s happening in Hollywood, it’s happening on ET.”
Produced and distributed by CBS Television Distribution, “Entertainment Tonight” is hosted by Frazier with Johnson serving as executive producer. Nischelle Turner, Keltie Knight, Lauren Zima, Rachel Smith and Matt Cohen are correspondents.