5:18am PT by Hilary Lewis
Jay Leno Insists He's Ready to Hand Over 'Tonight Show' to Jimmy Fallon (Video)
Jay Leno and Jimmy Fallon insist there's been nothing awkward about Fallon's taking over The Tonight Show, starting Feb. 17.
During a joint interview with Matt Lauer on NBC's Today, the two discussed the transition and shared their mutual admiration for one another.
Leno said "of course" he's ready to hand over the keys to The Tonight Show, adding "no problem."
He added that if Fallon wasn't taking over the show, he'd probably only stick around for another year or so.
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Fallon expressed his admiration for Leno and reiterated how he's received advice from his fellow host: "I mean, obviously, I look up to Jay, so we talk every couple of weeks or something like that. I just love his attention to detail and how he roots for me, all throughout late night. He'll give me advice if I ask for advice."
And Leno praised Fallon saying, "I really admire him as a comic. I think he's a really good performer. … I admire his professionalism and ability to do comedy. He's really good."
But Fallon may not be prepared for the stiff competition that comes with an 11:30 p.m. talk show.
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When asked whether he expected there to be tension with other late-night hosts, Fallon said, "I don't think for me. I don't think there's ever going to be anything tense."
Leno then began coughing and laughing and sarcastically said of possible tension Fallon would face, "Ridiculous!"
"Really? Maybe I have a lot to learn," Fallon said.
Leno, who's been mum about his plans after leaving The Tonight Show and isn't taking any meetings to discuss future projects until after his show ends, said he's not going to do another late show, but he'll miss Tonight.
Lauer said more from his exclusive sit-down with Leno and Fallon will air next week.
Watch the full segment that aired on Monday's Today below.