Colbert was an Emmy winner himself for his work on his Comedy Central series “The Colbert Report.”
The announcement continues a run of TV late night hosts acting as award show masters of ceremony. Last year’s Emmy Awards, which aired on ABC, were hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, and Kimmel will host the Academy Awards next month. Jimmy Fallon, of NBC’s “Tonight Show,” hosted the Golden Globes earlier this month.
“Stephen is the ultimate master of ceremonies with award-winning creative talents, and as we’ve seen the past few months, he has a fearless passion for live television,” said CBS’ Jack Sussman in a statement. “We look forward to honoring television’s best while entertaining audiences with the creative energy and sharp comedy of Stephen Colbert.”
Colbert also hosted the 39th Kennedy Center honors on CBS last year, along with a live election night special on the network’s premium cable sibling Showtime, a show that ended up offering more consolation to supporters of Democratic candidate Hilary Clinton than in-the-moment comedy.
The news of Colbert’s gig may also point to a continued exploration of political topics during awards telecasts. Last year’s Emmys found Kimmel making numerous jokes at the expense of then-presidential candidate Donald Trump, and this year’s Golden Globes featured pointed commentary from Meryl Streep as she accepted the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn.’s Cecil Be. DeMille Award .
Colbert has been a frequent critic of Trump.
“This will be the largest audience to witness an Emmys, period. Both in person and around the globe,” Colbert said in the same statement, which offered a hint of the same assured satire of the pundit “Stephen Colbert” character on “The Colbert Report.”
The Emmys are scheduled to air live from the Microsoft Theater on Sept. 17. Nominations for this year’s awards will be revealed July 13.