Next year, James Corden will be saying goodbye to “The Late Late Show.” Earlier this year, the news broke that Corden will be leaving his role as the host of CBS’ late night program for new opportunities. According to Corden, the decision to end his eight-and-a-half year term on the program was made with a lot of thought.
“When I took the job, I always saw it as an adventure rather than a final destination. And so I never ever took it thinking, ‘Well, that’s it. I’ve got one of these seats, one of these desks and I’ll be here forever,'” Corden said in the Variety Streaming Room presented by CBS. “Because I’m not a comedian, I’m not a stand-up comedian, I’m not a broadcaster. I really think of myself first and foremost as a performer, really. And I had a career before I took this show that I loved and was very proud of… And mainly it was just a feeling of, maybe we’ve done it. I don’t know that these shows, or certainly this iteration of the show in the manner that we do it, should be on forever.”
Corden was joined by “The Late Late Show” executive producers Rob Crabbe and Ben Winston for the discussion, moderated by Variety chief correspondent Elizabeth Wagmeister. The three discussed their years working on “The Late Late Show,” why they came to the decision to end the show and what fans can look forward to in the year ahead.
When asked what they hope to achieve in the final year of the show, Winston said he would love for the crew to do a carpool karaoke with Beyoncé. But what Winston is most looking forward to is the opportunity for the series to return to what it did best before the pandemic massively changed its structure.
“While the other shows ultimately could do the show that they’d always done — which was great monologues and fantastic, interesting talk segments — our wings were massively clipped. We couldn’t sit in a car because you can’t be that close, we couldn’t go on a crosswalk, we couldn’t fly on a plane, we couldn’t do the ‘Daylight’ music video,” Winston said. “And what happened, six to eight weeks ago, was ultimately like the handcuffs were taken off us. It was like, we’re all going to get COVID now, let’s just go for it. Of course, we do everything with precaution and safety, but it’s not a coincidence that in the last six weeks we’ve done something with the president and something with Harry [Styles] and something with Lizzo… I’m more just excited about doing our show again, and actually having a last year where we really can do what we always came here to do and enjoy it to the max.”
Watch the full Variety Streaming Room conversation above.