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Jimmy Kimmel almost retired before the WGA strike

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Jimmy Kimmel almost retired from his namesake late night talk show last year but realize he loves the job too much.

Jimmy Kimmel

Jimmy Kimmel Live! has proven to be one of the staples of late night TV, with the show more than 3,500 episodes and 20 seasons deep. With this sort of run, Kimmel currently stands as the longest-running late night talk show host. But as it turns out, he almost got out earlier this year, saying he had plans to retire from his namesake program.

Speaking on the first episode of the podcast Strike Force Five – in which he and other notably late night talk show hosts details the goings-on of the continued WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes – Jimmy Kimmel said, “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.” Still, he added, “I was serious, I was very, very serious.” Kimmel really must have been considering the move since he signed a three-year contract extension just last year. The Writers Guild of America strike is nearing four complete months, while the SAG-AFTRA one is closing in on 50 days.

Thankfully, Jimmy Kimmel Live! remains, although it, like so many other shows, is on hiatus due to the aforementioned strikes. As a result of this, Kimmel teamed up with Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, Seth Meyers, and John Oliver to launch Strike Force Five. On the podcast, which has a planned 12-episode run (although this could extend based on a number of factors, including just how long the strikes will last), “the hosts bring their unique insights, opinions, and humor…as they navigate the Hollywood strikes and beyond.” Proceeds from the podcast will go to their writers that have been put out of work due to the strike.

Jimmy Kimmel Live! has more than a dozen Primetime Emmy nominations, with three Creative Arts Emmys. It is nominated for Outstanding Talk Series this year, a major category it has yet to win.

While several people have hosted the Academy Awards more than once, Jimmy Kimmel is in a more limited camp of those that have hosted at least three times, joining Jerry Lewis, Steve Martin, Conrad Nagel, and David Niven. However, Kimmel is the only one of the lot to only host it solo.

Do you regularly tune into Jimmy Kimmel Live!? Where does the host sit among your favorite late night talk show hosts? Let us know in the comments section below!

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