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Jimmy Fallon is ready to pass the torch — er, pickle — to Seth Meyers.
The departing Late Night host passed the life-size green pickle to Meyers during their Jan. 28 interview.
The pickle has stayed within the Late Night family over the decades, with the staff of previous host David Letterman first presenting it to Conan O’Brien, who in turn handed it off to Fallon.
THR COVER: Jay Leno In-Depth: Post-‘Tonight’ Plans, Kimmel’s Insults, Zucker, What He Taught Letterman
Several years ago, Fallon talked about receiving the plastic pickle from O’Brien on Feb. 23, 2009, who hosted Late Night from 1993-2009. “Whenever you’re done — which won’t be for a long time — make sure you pass it on to the next sap. Knock ’em dead,” read part of O’Brien’s personal note to Fallon.
Afterward, Fallon said he cherished the pickle: “It just kind of put everything in perspective, even though I’m holding a giant pickle. What a great tradition this is and what a great honor.”
During the interview, Meyers reminisced about many “lasts” he would be experiencing this weekend after his final Saturday Night Live, including his last trip to the after-afterparty. Fallon also showed a clip from a 2001 episode of SNL, the first time Meyers appeared on “Weekend Update,” that also featured their questionable haircuts.
One of the biggest things Meyers was nervous about was the interviews. “It’s something you have to learn by doing,” Meyers said. The other thing he’s worried about? Actually having Saturdays off, hypothesizing that he’ll have to start attending “dinner parties” with his newfound day off.
In The Hollywood Reporter cover story, outgoing Tonight Show host Jay Leno had kind words for Fallon, who brings the late-night talker back to New York City on Feb. 17 with first guests Will Smith and U2.
STORY: NBC’s Bob Greenblatt on Jay Leno’s Future, Reveals Final Guests
“[Fallon]’s very good at what he does,” Leno said, but cautioned that he would not return if the new late-night lineup of Fallon and Meyers failed.
“I think that he’s the guy most like Johnny [Carson] was when he started, silly and very musical,” Leno said of Fallon. “When I watched Jimmy do a number with Justin Timberlake, I thought, ‘Well, I can’t do that.’ There’s clearly a huge generation gap between me and Jimmy.”
Meyers, meanwhile, debuts his Late Night show Feb. 24 with guest Amy Poehler.
Watch Fallon’s explanation of the pickle from 2009.
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