“It’s been it’s a really hard decision to leave because I’m so immensely proud of the show,” said Corden, who has extended his contract for exactly one year and plans to vacate his desk next spring. “I always thought I’d do it for five years and then leave and then I stayed on. I’ve really been thinking about it for a long time, thinking whether there might be one more adventure.”
Corden made his debut as the permanent host on March 23, 2015, taking the reins from Craig Ferguson, who hosted the show for nearly a decade, from 2005 to 2014. While Ferguson won a Peabody Award in 2009 for his interview with South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Corden made pop culture history with his Carpool Karaoke segments.
Corden was considered a bit of a gamble when he took over hosting duties from Ferguson. While he was already well-known as an actor, comedian, and co-creator of the BAFTA-winning BBC comedy series Gavin & Stacey in his native England, Corden was hardly a household name in America — particularly as he’d be joining the ranks of Seth Meyers, Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel, and Stephen Colbert. But as Peter White wrote for Deadline, Corden “reinvigorated the 12:30pm timeslot on CBS and breathed new life into late-night with viral segments such as Carpool Karaoke, Drop The Mic, Spill Your Guts and Crosswalk Musical.”
CBS president and CEO George Cheeks clearly agrees. “Seven years ago, James Corden came to the U.S. and took television by storm, with huge creative and comedic swings that resonated in a big way with viewers on-air and online,” he told Deadline. “From Crosswalk the Musical to the legendary Carpool Karaoke, and every unique comedy segment he introduced, James has truly reimagined many elements of the late-night format.”
As for where he’ll land next, Corden isn’t sure. Yet his talk show is only one of his many current endeavors. In addition to an acting career — an acting career that, yes, included a major role in Cats — he is also a partner in Fulwell 73, the production company you can blame for Hulu’s The Kardashians.
“There’s still some other things that I feel I want to do,” Corden said. “I’d like to try and write. There’s some [stories] I’d like to tell. I’d like to see if I’m capable of it. The fact that it’s terrifying is the reason to do it.”