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Jon Stewart

Jon Stewart

Jon Stewart (born** Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz**, November 28, 1962) is an American comedian, writer, producer, political commentator, actor, and television host.

He is best known for being the host ofThe Daily Show, a satirical news program on Comedy Central, from 1999 to 2015.

Stewart started as a stand-up comedian, but branched into television as host ofShort Attention Span Theater for Comedy Central.

He went on to host his own show on MTV,The Jon Stewart Show, and then hostedYou Wrote It, You Watch It, also on MTV.

He has also had several film roles as an actor, but has done few cinematic projects since becoming the host of* The Daily Show* in 1999.

He was also a writer and co-executive producer of the show.

After Stewart joined,* The Daily Show* steadily gained popularity and critical acclaim, and during his tenure,* The Daily Show* won 22 Primetime Emmy Awards.

Stewart is known as an acerbic, satirical critic of personality-driven media shows, in particular those of the U.S.

media networks such as CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC.

Critics say Stewart benefits from a double standard: he critiques other news shows from the safe, removed position of his " news satire" desk.

[undefined] [undefined] Stewart agrees, saying that neither his show nor his channel purports to be anything other than satire and comedy.

In spite of its self-professed entertainment mandate,* The Daily Show* has been nominated for news and journalism awards.

Stewart hosted the 78th and 80th Academy Awards.

He is the co-author ofAmerica (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction, which was one of the best-selling books in the U.S. in 2004, andEarth (The Book): A Visitor's Guide to the Human Race

Jon Stewart
Birth nameJonathan Stuart Leibowitz
Born(1962-11-28)November 28, 1962(age 54)New York City, U.S.
MediumStand-up, television, film, books
EducationLawrence High School
Alma materCollege of William & Mary
Years active1987–present
GenresPolitical/news satire,observational comedy,physical comedy,blue comedy,insult comedy,deadpan[undefined]
Subject(s)Mass media/news media/media criticism,American politics,Jewish culture,current events,pop culture
SpouseTracey McShane (m.

Early life

Jon Stewart was born Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz on November 28, 1962, [undefined] [undefined] in New York City, to Marian (née Laskin), a teacher and later educational consultant, [undefined] and Donald Leibowitz, a professor of physics at The College of New Jersey and Thomas Edison State College.

[undefined] [undefined] Stewart's family are Litvak Jews who emigrated to America from Poland, Ukraine and Belarus.

One of his grandfathers was born in Manzhouli(now part of Inner Mongolia).

[undefined] He is the second of four sons, with older brother Lawrence [undefined] and younger brothers Dan and Matthew.


Stewart's parents divorced when he was eleven years old, and Stewart was largely estranged from his father.

[undefined] Because of his strained relationship with his father, which in 2015 he described as "still 'complicated'", he dropped his surname and began using his middle name, Stuart.

Stewart stated, "There was a thought of using my mother's maiden name, but I thought that would be just too big a fuck you to my dad...Did I have some problems with my father?


Yet people always view [changing my surname] through the prism of ethnic identity."

He had his surname legally changed to Stewart in 2001.

[undefined] Stewart and his brother Lawrence, who was previously the Chief Operating Officer of NYSE Euronext(parent company of the New York Stock Exchange), [undefined] grew up in Lawrenceville, New Jersey, where they attended Lawrence High School.

[undefined] According to Stewart, he was subjected to anti-Semiticbullying as a child.

[undefined] He describes himself in high school as "very into Eugene Debs and a bit of a leftist."


Stewart grew up in the era of the Vietnam War and the Watergate scandal, which inspired in him "a healthy skepticism towards official reports".

His first job was working at a Woolworth's at which his brother Lawrence worked, and jokingly describes being fired by Lawrence as one of the "scarring events" of his youth.

Stewart graduated in 1984 from the College of William & Mary in Virginia, where he played on the soccer team and initially majored in chemistry before switching to psychology.

[undefined] While at William & Mary, Stewart became a brother of the Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity, [undefined] but later disassociated himself from the fraternity and left after six months.

[undefined] "My college career was waking up late, memorizing someone else's notes, doing bong hits, and going to soccer practice," he would later recall.

[undefined] His soccer coach would later describe him as a "good player" with "high energy".

[undefined] After college, Stewart held numerous jobs: a contingency planner for the New Jersey Department of Human Services, a contract administrator for the City University of New York, a puppeteer for children with disabilities, a soccer coach at Gloucester High School in Virginia, a caterer, a busboy, a shelf stocker at Woolworth's, a bartender at the Franklin Corner Tavern (a local blue-collar bar), and a bartender at the legendary City Gardens in Trenton, New Jersey.

[undefined] [undefined] He has said that working at City Gardens was a pivotal moment for him: "finding this place City Gardens was like, 'Oh, maybe I'm not a giant weirdo.

Maybe there are other people who have a similar sense of yearning for something other than what they have now.' I think it inspired a lot of people, man.

It was a very creative environment.

It was a place of great possibility."



Early work

With a reputation for being a funny man in school, [undefined] Jon Stewart returned to New York City in 1986 to try his hand at the comedy club circuit, but he could not muster the courage to get on stage until the following year.

[undefined] He made his stand-up debut at The Bitter End, where his comedic idol, Woody Allen, also began.

[undefined] He began using the stage name"Jon Stewart" by dropping his last name and changing the spelling of his middle name "Stuart" to "Stewart".

He often jokes this is because people had difficulty with the pronunciation of Leibowitz or it "sounded too Hollywood" (a reference to Lenny Bruce's joke on the same theme).

[undefined] He has implied that the name change was actually due to a strained relationship with his father, with whom Stewart no longer had any contact.


Stewart became a regular at the Comedy Cellar, where he was the last performer every night.

For two years, he would perform at 2 a.m. while developing his comedic style.

In 1989, Stewart landed his first television job as a writer forCaroline's Comedy Hour.

In 1990, he began co-hosting Comedy Central'sShort Attention Span Theater, with Patty Rosborough.

[undefined] In 1992, Stewart hosted the short-livedYou Wrote It, You Watch It on MTV, which invited viewers to send in their stories to be acted out by the comedy troupe, The State.


Stewart felt his career did not take off until a March 1993 appearance on NBC'sLate Night with David Letterman.

[undefined] He was considered a finalist to take over Letterman's position upon his departure from the program, but it was instead given to relatively unknown Conan O'Brien.


The Jon Stewart Show

Later in 1993, Stewart developedThe Jon Stewart Show, a talk show on MTV.

  • The Jon Stewart Show* was the first talk show on that network and was an instant hit, becoming the second-highest rated MTV show behindBeavis and Butt-head.

In 1994, Paramount canceledThe Arsenio Hall Show and, with new corporate sibling MTV (through MTV parent Viacom's acquisition of the studio), launched an hour-long syndicated late-night version of* The Jon Stewart Show*.

Many local affiliates had moved Hall's show to 2 a.m. during its decline and Stewart's show inherited such early morning time slots in many cities.

Ratings were dismal and the show was canceled in June 1995.

Among the fans of the show was David Letterman, who was the final guest of* The Jon Stewart Show*.

Letterman signed Stewart with his production company, Worldwide Pants.

[undefined] Stewart then became a frequent guest host for Tom Snyder onThe Late Late Show with Tom Snyder, which was produced by Letterman and aired after theLate Show on CBS.

This led to much speculation that Stewart would soon replace Snyder permanently, [undefined] but Stewart was instead offered the time slot after Snyder's, which he turned down.


In 1996 Stewart hosted a short-lived talk show called " Where's Elvis This Week?" It was a half-hour, weekly comedy television program that aired on Sunday nights in the United Kingdom on BBC Two.

It was filmed at the CBS Broadcast Center in New York City and featured a set of panelists, two from the United Kingdom and two from the United States, who discussed news items and cultural issues.

The show premiered in the UK on October 6, 1996; five episodes aired in total.

Notable panelists included Dave Chappelle, Eddie Izzard, Phil Jupitus, Nora Ephron, Craig Kilborn, Christopher Hitchens, Armando Iannucci, Norm Macdonald, and Helen Gurley Brown.

In 1997, Stewart was chosen as the host and interviewer for George Carlin's 10th HBO special,* 40 Years of Comedy*.

The Daily Show

In 1999, Stewart began hostingThe Daily Show on Comedy Central when Craig Kilborn left the show to replace Tom Snyder onThe Late Late Show.

The show blends humor with the day's top news stories, usually in politics, while simultaneously poking fun at politicians and many newsmakers as well as the news media itself.

In an interview onThe O'Reilly Factor, Stewart denied the show has any intentional political agenda, saying the goal was "schnicks and giggles."

"The same weakness that drove me into comedy also informs my show," meaning that he was uncomfortable talking without hearing the audience laugh.

[undefined] "Stewart does not offer us cynicism for its own sake, but as a playful way to offer the kinds of insights that are not permitted in more serious news formats that slavishly cling to official account of events."

Stewart has since hosted almost all airings of the program, except for a few occasions when correspondents such as Stephen Colbert, Rob Corddry, Jason Jones and Steve Carell subbed for him, and during John Oliver's stint as host during the summer of 2013.

Stewart has won a total of twenty Primetime Emmy Awards for* The Daily Show* as either a writer or producer, and two for producingThe Colbert Report (2013—2014), winning a total of twenty-two Primetime Emmy Awards, having the most wins for a male individual.

[undefined] In 2005, Stewart and* The Daily Show* received the Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album for the audio book edition ofAmerica (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction.

In 2000 and 2004, the show won two Peabody Awards for its coverage of the presidential elections relevant to those years, called " Indecision 2000" and " Indecision 2004", respectively.

The show of September 20, 2001, the first show after the attacks of September 11, 2001, began with no introduction.

[undefined] Before this, the introduction included footage of a fly-in towards the World Trade Center and New York City.

The first nine minutes of the show included a tearful Stewart discussing his personal view on the event.

His remarks ended as follows:

"The view... from my apartment... was the World Trade Center... and now it's gone, and they attacked it.This symbol of American ingenuity, and strength, and labor, and imagination and commerce, and it is gone.But you know what the view is now?TheStatue of Liberty.The view from theSouth of Manhattanis now the Statue of Liberty.You can't beat that."[undefined]

In mid-2002, amid rumors that David Letterman was going to switch from CBS to ABC when his contract ran out, Stewart was rumored as Letterman's replacement on CBS.

[undefined] Ultimately, Letterman renewed his contract with CBS.

On the March 9, 2002, episode ofSaturday Night Live, hosted by Stewart, a " Weekend Update" sketch poked fun at the situation.

In late 2002, ABC offered Stewart his own talk show to air right beforeNightline.

Stewart's contract with* The Daily Show* was near expiring, and he expressed strong interest. ABC,

however, decided to give another Comedy Central figure, Jimmy Kimmel, the pre-* Nightline* slot. [undefined]

On April 4, 2006, Stewart confronted U.S.

SenatorJohn McCain about his decision to appear at Liberty University, an institution founded by Jerry Falwell, whom McCain had previously denounced as one of the "agents of intolerance".

[undefined] [undefined] In the interchange, Stewart asked McCain, "You're not freaking out on us?

Are you freaking out on us, because if you're freaking out and you're going into the crazy base world—are you going into crazy base world?" McCain replied, "I'm afraid so."

The clip was played on CNN and created a surge of articles across the blogosphere.

[undefined] [undefined]

In 2007,* The Daily Show* was involved in former correspondent Stephen Colbert's announcement that he would run for president in 2008.

In 2008, Stewart appeared on the news programDemocracy Now! [undefined] A 2008New York Times story questioned whether he was, in a phrase originally used to describe longtime network news anchor Walter Cronkite, "the most trusted man in America".


On April 28, 2009, during a discussion on torture with Clifford May, Stewart expressed his opinion that former President Harry S. Truman was a war criminal for his use of the atomic bomb on Japan during World War II.

[undefined] [undefined] Moments later, Stewart defended his assertion: "Here's what I think of the atom bombs.

I think if you dropped an atom bomb fifteen miles offshore and you said, 'The next one's coming and hitting you', then I would think it's okay.

To drop it on a city, and kill a hundred thousand people.


I think that's criminal."

On April 30, 2009, Stewart apologized on his program, and stated he did not believe Truman was a war criminal: [undefined] "I shouldn't have said that, and I did.

So I say right now, no, I don't believe that to be the case.

The atomic bomb, a very complicated decision in the context of a horrific war, and I walk that back because it was in my estimation a stupid thing to say."


In April 2010, Comedy Central renewed Stewart's contract to host* The Daily Show* into 2013.

[undefined] According to the Forbes list of Celebrities in 2008, he was earning $14 million a year.

On September 16, 2010, Stewart and Stephen Colbert announced a rally for October 30, known as the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear.

It took place on the National Mall in [[LINK|lang_en|Washington%2C_D.C.|Washington,

D.C.]] and attracted an estimated 215,000 participants. [undefined]

In December 2010, Stewart was credited by the White House and other media and political news outlets for bringing awareness of the Republican filibuster on the James Zadroga9/11 Health and Compensation Act to the public, leading to the ultimate passing of the bill which provides health benefits to first responders whose health has been adversely affected by their work at Ground Zero. [undefined]

On the show of January 10, 2011, Stewart began with a monologue about the shootings in Tucson, AZ.

[undefined] He said he wished the "ramblings of crazy people didn't in any way resemble how we actually talk to each other on television".

[undefined] Before commercial break, Stewart told viewers that the show would continue as usual the next night.

After commercial break, the show featured a rerun of a field piece done by Jason Jones two years earlier.

The New York Times opined that he is "the modern-day equivalent of Edward R. Murrow" and the UK national newspaperThe Independent called him the "satirist-in-chief".

In an interview, Senator John McCain described Stewart as "a modern-day Will Rogers and Mark Twain".

[undefined] [undefined]

Wyatt Cenac aid that Stewart cursed him out after Cenac acknowledged he was uncomfortable about a June 2011* Daily Show* bit about Republican Presidential candidate Herman Cain(reported in July 2015).

[undefined] [undefined]

In March 2013, it was announced that Stewart would be taking a 12-week hiatus from* The Daily Show* to direct the filmRosewater, based on the bookThen They Came for Me by Maziar Bahari.

[undefined] [undefined] Beginning June 10, 2013,* The Daily Show* correspondent John Oliver assumed primary hosting duties during Stewart's break.

[undefined]TV Guide ' s annual survey for 2013 star salaries showed that Stewart was the highest-paid late night host, making an estimated $25–30 million per year.


On July 14, 2014, Stewart interviewed Hillary Clinton about the Middle East.

Clinton's condemnations of Hamas led Stewart to ask her: "But don't you think they would look at that though as, they've given a lot of different things a chance and these are the only guys to them that are giving any resistance to what their condition is?” For Gazans living in that situation, he said Hamas could be viewed as "freedom fighters".

[undefined] [undefined] On August 1, 2014, Stewart stated on air that "We cannot be Israel's rehab sponsor and its drug dealer".

[undefined] [undefined]

Departure fromThe Daily Show

During a taping of the show on February 10, 2015, Stewart announced he was leaving* The Daily Show*.

[undefined] Comedy Central President Michele Ganeless confirmed Stewart's retirement with a statement.

[undefined] It was later announced that South African comedian Trevor Noah would succeed Stewart as the host of the show.

On April 20, 2015, Stewart indicated that his final show would be on August 6, 2015.


On July 28, 2015, Darren Samuelsohn of* Politico* reported that Stewart had been twice at the White House for previously unreported meetings with President Obama: once in October 2011 and once in February 2014.

[undefined] Michael D. Shear of* The New York Times* also picked up on the story.

[undefined] Stewart responded on his show by pointing out that the meetings were listed in the President's publicly available visitor log and that he has been asked to meet privately by many prominent individuals including Roger Ailes of Fox News.

He said Obama encouraged him not to make young Americans cynical about their government, and Stewart replied that he was actually "skeptically idealistic".


The hour-plus-long final show on August 6 featured reunions with former Daily Show correspondents and cameo video clips from people Stewart had targeted over the years including Bill O'Reilly, John McCain, Chris Christie, and Hillary Clinton.

It concluded with a performance by Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band.


HBO Projects

In November 2015, it was announced that Stewart signed a four-year deal with HBO that will include exclusive digital content for HBO NOW, HBO Go and other platforms.


HBO programming president Casey Bloys has said that “the idea is it will be an animated parody of a cable news network with an* Onion* -like portal.”

[undefined] The team is currently working with cloud graphics company OTOY to build out a system for creating content.

[undefined] Confirmed to be working on the project are Mike Brown, Steve Waltien, Chelsea Devantez, Lucy Steiner, Kate James, and Robby Slowik.

The team tested out material in Red Bank, New Jersey at The Count Basie Theatre Performing Arts Academy.

The show's premiere was moved several times, from fall 2016, [undefined] to the first quarter of 2017, [undefined] and then cancelled on Tuesday, May 23, 2017.


The cancelation statement read:


In 1998, Stewart released his first book,Naked Pictures of Famous People, a collection of humorous short stories and essays.

The book reached The New York Times Best Seller List.

In 2004, Stewart and* The Daily Show* writing staff releasedAmerica (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction, a mock high schoolHistorytextbook offering insights into the unique American system of government, dissecting its institutions, explaining its history and processes, and satirizing such popular American political precepts as " one man, one vote", "government by the people," and "every vote counts."

The book sold millions of copies upon its 2004 release and ended the year as a top-fifteen best seller.

In 2005, Stewart provided the voice of President James A. Garfield for the audiobook version of Sarah Vowell'sAssassination Vacation

In 2007, Stewart voiced a role on Stephen Colbert's audiobook version ofI Am America (And So Can You!)

On September 21, 2010,Earth (The Book): A Visitor's Guide to the Human Race, written by Stewart and other writers of* The Daily Show*, was released.

In March 2012, Stewart interviewed Bruce Springsteen forRolling Stone


Although best known for his work onThe Daily Show, Stewart has had roles in several films and television series.

His first film role was a bit part in the box-office bombMixed Nuts. He landed a minor part inThe First Wives Club, but his scene was deleted.

[undefined] In 1995, Stewart signed a three-year deal with Miramax.

[undefined] He played romantic leads in the filmsPlaying by Heart andWishful Thinking.

He had a supporting role in the romantic comedySince You've Been Gone and in the horror filmThe Faculty.

Other films were planned for Stewart to write and star in, but they were never produced.

Stewart has since maintained a relationship with Miramax founders Harvey and Bob Weinstein and continues to appear in films they have produced includingJay and Silent Bob Strike Back,Doogal and the documentaryWordplay

He appeared inHalf Baked as an "enhancement smoker" and inBig Daddy as Adam Sandler's roommate; he has joked on the* Daily Show* and in the documentaryThe Aristocrats that to get the role he slept with Sandler.

Stewart often makes fun of his appearances in the high-profile flop* Death to Smoochy*, in which he played a treacherous television executive, and the animated filmDoogal, [undefined] where he played a blue spring named Zeebad who shot a freeze ray from his mustache.

In 2007, Stewart made a cameo appearance as himself inEvan Almighty, which starred former* Daily Show* correspondent Steve Carell.

In the movie, Stewart was seen on a television screen in a fictional* Daily Show* episode poking fun at Carell's character for building an ark.

Stewart had a recurring role inThe Larry Sanders Show, playing himself as an occasional substitute and possible successor to late-night talk show host Larry Sanders(played by Garry Shandling).

In 1998, Stewart hosted the television special,Elmopalooza, celebrating 30 years ofSesame Street.

He has guest-starred on other sitcoms includingThe Nanny,Dr.

Katz, Professional Therapist,Spin City,NewsRadio,American Dad!, andThe Simpsons.

He has made guest-appearances on the children's television series* Between the Lions*,Sesame Street andJack's Big Music Show


In the mid-1990s, Stewart launched his own production company, Busboy Productions, naming the company in reference to his previous job as a busboy.

Stewart signed a deal with Miramax to develop projects through his company, but none of his ideas have been produced.

After Stewart's success as host and producer of* The Daily Show*, he revived Busboy Productions with* Daily Show* producers Ben Karlin and Rich Korson.

In 2002, Busboy planned to produce a sitcom for NBC starring Stephen Colbert, but the show did not come to fruition.

In 2005, Comedy Central reached an agreement with Busboy in which Comedy Central would provide financial backing for the production company.

Comedy Central has a first-look agreement on all projects, after which Busboy is free to shop them to other networks.

[undefined] [undefined]

The deal spawned the* Daily Show* spin-offThe Colbert Report and its replacementThe Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore.

Other projects include the sitcom pilotThree Strikes, the documentarySportsfan, the series * Important Things with Demetri Martin*, and the film* The Donor*.

After Stewart's departure from* The Daily Show*, he was listed as an executive producer onThe Late Show with Stephen Colbert.



In March 2010, Stewart announced that he had optioned rights to the story of journalist Maziar Bahari, who was imprisoned in Iran for 118 days.

[undefined] On the June 6, 2011 episode of* The Daily Show*, Stewart again hosted Bahari, and in March 2013, he announced that he was leaving the show for 12 weeks to direct the film version of Bahari's 2011 book* Then They Came For Me.* Stewart's screenplay adaptation is titledRosewater.

[undefined] [undefined] It premiered at the September 2014 Toronto International Film Festival, receiving "generally favorable" reviews, [undefined] and was released to general audiences on November 14, 2014.

On directing, Stewart noted on Lazarus's show that "The Daily Show" influenced his directing process more than his acting gigs did.

He said, "It's about the collaboration.

It's about understanding.

Doing a show taught me this process of clarity of vision, but flexibility of process.

So know your intention, know where you're wanting to go with the scene with the way that you want it to go, the momentum shifts, the emphasis, where you want it to be."

[undefined] He also expressed interest in directing more films.


Hosting and public speaking

Stewart has hosted the Grammy Awards twice, in 2001 and in 2002, and the 78th Academy Awards, which were held March 5 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood.

[undefined] Critical response to Stewart's performance was mixed.

Roger Ebert compared him favorably to legendary Oscar host Johnny Carson.

[undefined] Other reviewers were less positive; Tom Shales ofThe Washington Post said that Stewart hosted with "smug humorlessness."

James Poniewozik ofTIME said that Stewart was a bad host, but a great "anti-host" in that he poked fun at parts of the broadcast that deserved it, which lent him a degree of authenticity with the non- Hollywood audience.

[undefined] Stewart and correspondent John Oliver later poked fun at his lackluster reception on* The Daily Show* 's coverage of the 79th Academy Awards by saying that the " demon of last year's Oscars had finally been exorcised."

Stewart returned to host the 80th Academy Awards on February 24, 2008.

The reception to his performance was better received.

Matthew Gilbert of theBoston Globe felt the ceremony itself was average but praised Stewart, writing that, "It was good to see Jon Stewart being Jon Stewart.

He is shaping up to be a dependable Oscar host for the post-Billy Crystal years.

He's not musical, but he's versatile enough to swing smoothly between jokes about politics, Hollywood, new media, and, most importantly, hair."

[undefined]Variety columnist Brian Lowry lauded Stewart's performance noting that he "earned his keep by maintaining a playful, irreverent tone throughout the night, whether it was jesting about Cate Blanchett’s versatility or watchingLawrence of Arabia on an iPhone screen.


In December 2009, Stewart gave a speech at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts honoring Bruce Springsteen, one of that year's Kennedy Center Honors recipients, and of whom Stewart is a fan.

Stewart gave another speech paying tribute to Springsteen in February 2013 as part of the singer's MusiCares Person of the Year award ceremony.


Stewart began a comedic feud with WWE wrestler Seth Rollins in March 2015, and appeared onWWE Raw during a* Daily Show* -styled segment hosted by Rollins.

On August 23, 2015, Stewart returned to host the WWE's SummerSlam at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

He would later get involved in the main event between Rollins and John Cena, helping Rollins retain his WWE World Heavyweight Championship, as well as winning Cena's United States Championship.

The next night on* Raw*, he explained his actions, saying he did it for Ric Flair(who was also present), which was to retain his world championship record.

Cena then gave Stewart his finishing move, the Attitude Adjustment, to end the segment.

Stewart returned at SummerSlam on August 21, 2016 as a special guest.


Stewart got into a Twitter war with then-candidate Donald Trump, who in multiple tweets equated Stewart's changing his name from his birth name indicated that Stewart was a fraud.

Stewart and some analysts considered this to be anti-Semitic.

As Trump tweeted that Stewart should be "proud of his heritage", Stewart tweeted back, facetiously that Trump's real name was "Fuckface Von Clownstick" and that Trump should be proud of the "Clownstick heritage."

[undefined] [undefined] [undefined] [undefined] [undefined] [undefined] [undefined]

Stewart's criticism of television journalists


In a televised exchange with then-CNN correspondent Tucker Carlson onCrossfire on October 15, 2004, Stewart criticized the state of television journalism and pleaded with the show's hosts to "stop hurting America", and referred to both Carlson and co-host Paul Begala as " partisan hacks".

[undefined] When posted on the internet, this exchange became widely viewed and was a topic of much media discussion.

Despite being on the program to comment on current events, Stewart immediately shifted the discussion toward the show itself, asserting that* Crossfire* had failed in its responsibility to inform and educate viewers about politics as a serious topic.

Stewart stated that the show engaged in partisan hackery instead of honest debate, and said that the hosts' assertion that* Crossfire* is a debate show is like "saying pro wrestling is a show about athletic competition."

Carlson responded by saying that Stewart criticizes news organizations for not holding public officials accountable, but when he interviewed John Kerry, Stewart asked a series of "softball" questions (Stewart has acknowledged he voted for Kerry in the 2004 presidential election).

Stewart responded that he didn't realize "the news organizations look toComedy Central for their cues on integrity."

When Carlson continued to press Stewart on the Kerry issue, Stewart said, "You're on CNN!

The show that leads into me is puppets making crank phone calls!

What is wrong with you?" In response to prods from Carlson, "Come on.

Be funny," Stewart said, "No, I'm not going to be your monkey."

Later in the show when Carlson jibed, "I do think you're more fun on your show," Stewart retorted, "You're as big a dick on your show as you are on any show."

In response to Stewart's criticisms, Carlson said, "You need to get a job at a journalism school," to which Stewart responded, "You need to go to one!" [undefined]

Stewart discussed the incident on* The Daily Show* the following Monday:

In January 2005, CNN announced that it was canceling* Crossfire*.

When asked about the cancellation, CNN's incoming president, Jonathan Klein, referenced Stewart's appearance on the show: "I think he made a good point about the noise level of these types of shows, which does nothing to illuminate the issues of the day."

On March 18, 2009, Carlson wrote a blog entry forThe Daily Beast criticizing Stewart for his handling of the CNBC controversy (see below).

Carlson discussed the CNN incident and claimed that Stewart remained backstage for at least "an hour" and "continued to lecture our staff", something Carlson described as "one of the weirdest things I have ever seen."


Criticism of CNBC

Stewart again became a viral internet phenomenon following a March 4, 2009,* The Daily Show* sequence.

CNBC canceled Rick Santelli's scheduled appearance but Stewart still ran a short segment showing CNBC giving bad investment advice.


Subsequent media coverage of exchanges between Jim Cramer, who had been featured heavily in the original segment, and Stewart, led to a highly anticipated face-to-face confrontation on* The Daily Show*.

[undefined] The episode received much media attention and became the second most-viewed episode of* The Daily Show*, trailing only the 2009 Inauguration Day episode.

It had 2.3 million total viewers, and the next day, the show's website saw its highest day of traffic in 2009.

[undefined] Although Cramer acknowledged on the show that some of Stewart's criticisms of CNBC were valid and that the network could "do better," he later said onThe

Today Show that Stewart's criticism of the media was "naïve and misleading." [undefined]

Criticism of Fox News

Throughout his tenure on* The Daily Show*, Stewart has frequently accused Fox News of distorting the news to fit a conservative agenda, at one point ridiculing the network as "the meanest sorority in the world."

[undefined] In November 2009, Stewart called out Fox News for using some footage from a previous Tea Party rally during a report on a more recent rally, making the latter event appear more highly attended than it actually was.

The show's anchor, Sean Hannity, apologized for the footage use the following night.

[undefined] A month later, Stewart criticizedFox & Friends cohost Gretchen Carlson– a former Miss America and a Stanford graduate – for claiming that she googled words such as "ignoramus" and "czar".

Stewart said that Carlson was dumbing herself down for "an audience who sees intellect as an elitist flaw".


Stewart stepped up his criticism of Fox News in 2010; as of April 24,* The Daily Show* had 24 segments criticizing Fox News' coverage.

Bill O'Reilly, host of the talk showThe O'Reilly Factor on Fox News, countered that* The Daily Show* was a "key component of left-wing television" and that Stewart loved Fox News because the network was "not boring".

During an interview with Chris Wallace on June 19, 2011, Stewart called Wallace "insane" after Wallace said that Stewart's earlier comparison of a Sarah Palin campaign video and an anti-herpes medicine ad was a political comment.

Stewart also said Fox viewers are the "most consistently misinformed" viewers of political media.

[undefined] This comment was ranked by fact-checking site PolitiFact as false, with conditions.

Stewart later accepted his error.

In 2014, Stewart engaged in an extended "call-out" of Fox News based on their perceived hypocritical coverage of food stamps and U.S.

Government assistance.

This culminated during the Bundy standoff involving multiple segments, across multiple episodes, specifically singling out Sean Hannity and Hannity's coverage of the event.

Hannity would "return fire" by calling out Stewart for associating himself with Cat Stevens during his Rally in 2010.

Stewart responded to this by calling out Hannity for frequently calling Ted Nugent a "friend and frequent guest" on his program and supporting Nugent's violent rhetoric towards Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in 2007.

In late August 2014, Stewart vehemently opposed the manner in which Fox News portrayed the events surrounding the shooting of teenager Michael Brown by police officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri and the subsequent protests from citizens.


Stewart sometimes used* The Daily Show* to argue for causes such as the treatment of veterans and 9/11 first responders.

He is credited with breaking a Senate deadlock over a bill to provide health care and benefits for 9/11 emergency workers; the bill passed three days after he featured a group of 9/11 responders on the show.

In March 2009, he criticized a White House proposal to remove veterans from Veterans Administration rolls if they had private health insurance; the White House dropped the plan the next day.


Writers Guild of America strike of 2007–2008

Stewart was an important factor in the unionization of the Comedy Central writers.

  • The Daily Show* writers were the first of Comedy Central's writers to be able to join the guild, after which other shows followed.

Stewart supported the 2007–08 Writers Guild of America strike.

On* The Daily Show* episode just before the strike, he sarcastically commented about how Comedy Central had made available all episodes for free on their website, but without advertising, and said, "go support our advertisers".

The show went on hiatus when the strike began, as did other late night talk shows.

Upon Stewart's return to the show on January 7, 2008, he refused to use the title* The Daily Show*, stating that* The Daily Show* was the show made with all of the people responsible for the broadcast, including his writers.

During the strike, he referred to his show as ADaily Show with Jon Stewart until the strike ended on February 13, 2008.

Stewart's choice to return to the air did bring criticism that he was undermining the writers of his show.

Seth MacFarlane wrote an inside joke into an episode ofFamily Guy about this, causing Stewart to respond with an hour-long call in which he questioned how MacFarlane could consider himself the "moral arbiter" of Hollywood.

Other former writers of* The Daily Show* such as David Feldman have also indicated that Stewart was anti-union at the time and punished his writers for their decision to unionize.

The Writers Guild Strike of 2007–08 was also responsible for a notable mock feud between Stewart, Stephen Colbert, and Conan O'Brien in early 2008.

Without writers to help fuel their banter, the three comedians concocted a crossover/rivalry in order to garner more viewers during the ratings slump.

Colbert made the claim that because of "the Colbert bump", he was responsible for Mike Huckabee's success in the 2008

presidential race. O'Brien

claimed that he was responsible for Huckabee's success because not only had he mentioned Huckabee on his show, but also that he was responsible for Chuck Norris' success (Norris backed Huckabee). In

response, Stewart claimed that he was responsible for the success of O'Brien, since Stewart had featured him onThe Jon Stewart Show, and in turn the success of Huckabee. This

resulted in a three-part comedic battle between the three pundits, with all three appearing on each other's shows. The

feud ended onLate Night with Conan O'Brien with a mock brawl involving the three hosts. [undefined]


Stewart has said his influences include George Carlin, Lenny Bruce, [undefined] David Letterman, Steve Martin, [undefined] and Richard Pryor.


Among comedians who say they were influenced by Stewart are Stephen Colbert, [undefined] John Oliver, [undefined] Samantha Bee, [undefined] Larry Wilmore, Bassem Youssef, [undefined] and Trevor Noah.

Personal life

Stewart is Jewish by ethnicity but is irreligious.


While making the 1997 film* Wishful Thinking*, a production assistant on the film set Stewart up on a blind date with Tracey Lynn McShane.

They dated for four years.

[undefined] [undefined] Stewart proposed to her through a personalized crossword puzzle created with the help of Will Shortz, the crossword editor atThe New York Times.

[undefined] [undefined] They married in 2000.

[undefined] [undefined] [undefined] On June 19, 2001, Stewart and his wife filed a joint name change application and legally changed both of their surnames to "Stewart".

[undefined] With the help of in vitro fertilization, the couple has two children.

[undefined] [undefined]

In 2000, when he was labeled a Democrat, Stewart generally agreed but described his political affiliation as "more socialist or independent" than Democratic.

[undefined] Stewart has voted for Republicans, the last time being in the 1988 presidential election when he voted for George H. W. Bush over Michael Dukakis.

He described Bush as having "an integrity about him that I respected greatly".


In 2013, Jon and Tracey bought a 12-acre (4.9 ha) farm in Middletown, New Jersey, called "Bufflehead Farm".

The Stewarts use it as a sanctuary for abused animals.

[undefined] In 2015 Stewart started a vegetarian diet out of ethical reasons; his wife is a long-time vegan.


In 2017, Jon and Tracey received approval to open a 45-acre (18 ha) animal sanctuary in Colts Neck that will be home to animals saved from slaughterhouses and live markets.

Honors and awards

Stewart at the launch of his book,Earth (The Book)

Stewart at the launch of his book,Earth (The Book)

Stewart and other members of* The Daily Show* have received two Peabody Awards for " Indecision 2000" and " Indecision 2004", covering the 2000 presidential election and the 2004 presidential election, respectively.

The Daily Showreceived the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Variety, Music, or Comedy Program in 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2009, 2011, 2012, and 2015 and Outstanding Variety, Music, or Comedy Series for 10 consecutive years from 2003 to 2012.

In 2013, the award for both categories instead went to* The Daily Show* spin-offThe Colbert Report.

In 2015,* The Daily Show* resurfaced, winning both categories for one last time for Stewart's swan song as host.

Stewart won the Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album in 2005 for his recording,America (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction

In the December 2003 New Year's edition ofNewsweek

In 2004, Stewart spoke at the commencement ceremonies at his alma mater, William and Mary, and received an honorary Doctor of Arts degree.

Stewart was also the Class Day keynote speaker at Princeton University in 2004, and the 2008 Sacerdote Great Names speaker at Hamilton College.

Stewart was named one of the* 2005 Time 100*, an annual list of 100 of the most influential people of the year byTIME

Stewart and* The Daily Show* received the 2005 National Council of Teachers of English(NCTE) George Orwell Award for Distinguished Contribution to Honesty and Clarity in Public Language.

Stewart was presented an Honorary All-America Award by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) in 2006.

On April 21, 2009, President of LiberiaEllen Johnson Sirleaf made Stewart a chief.

On October 26, 2010, Stewart was named the Most Influential Man of 2010 by AskMen.



1994Mixed NutsRollerblader
1996The First Wives ClubElise's loverScenes deleted
1997Wishful ThinkingHenry
1998Half BakedEnhancement Smoker
1998The FacultyProf Edward Furlong
1998Playing by HeartTrent
1999Big DaddyKevin Gerrity
  • The Office Party*
Pizza GuyShort film
2000CommittedParty GuestUncredited cameo
2001Jay and Silent Bob Strike BackReg Hartner
2002Death to SmoochyMarion Frank Stokes
2002The Adventures of Tom Thumb and ThumbelinaGodfrey (voice)
2006DoogalZeebad (voice)
2007Evan AlmightyHimselfCameo
2008The Great Buck HowardHimselfCameo
2011The Adjustment BureauHimselfCameo
2011The BeaverHimselfCameo
2014RosewaterDirector, producer, writer
2016Batman v Superman: Dawn of JusticeHimselfCameo
  • Ultimate Edition*
2017Tickling GiantsHimselfDocumentary


1990–1993Short Attention Span TheaterHimself (host)
1992–1993You Wrote It, You Watch ItHimself (host)
1993–1995The Jon Stewart ShowHimself (host)160 episodes; also creator, executive producer, writer
1994The StateFanmail GuyEpisode: "2.4"
  • Jon Stewart: Unleavened*
HimselfStand-up special
1996–1997The Larry Sanders ShowHimself2 episodes
1997The NannyBobbyEpisode: "Kissing Cousins"
1997NewsRadioAndrewEpisode: "Twins"
1997Dr. Katz, Professional TherapistJon (voice)Episode: "Guess Who"
1997Space Ghost Coast to CoastHimselfEpisode: "Mayonnaise"
1997Mr. Show with Bob and DavidHimselfEpisode: "A White Man Set Them Free"
1998Since You've Been GoneTodd ZalinskyTV movie
1998ElmopaloozaHimselfTV special
1999Spin CityParkerEpisode: "Wall Street"
1999–2015The Daily Show with Jon StewartHimself (host)2,579 episodes; also executive producer, writer
200143rd Annual Grammy AwardsHimself (host)TV special
200244th Annual Grammy AwardsHimself (host)TV special
2002Saturday Night LiveHimself (host)Episode: "Jon Stewart/India.Arie"
2005–2014The Colbert ReportHimself1,447 episodes; co-creator, executive producer Also appeared in 19 episodes as a guest
200678th Academy AwardsHimself (host)TV special
2006American Dad!Himself (voice)Episode: "Irregarding Steve"
2007Jack's Big Music ShowBrunk StinegrouberEpisode: "Groundhog Day"
2008The SimpsonsHimself (voice)Episode: "E Pluribus Wiggum"
200880th Academy AwardsHimself (host)TV special
2008A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All!HimselfTV special
2009–2010Important Things with Demetri Martin17 episodes; executive producer
2010Rally to Restore Sanity and/or FearHimself (host)TV special
2012Robot ChickenMatt Trakker, Serpentor (voice)Episode: "Executed by the State"
2013Big Time RushHimselfEpisode: "Big Time Invasion"
2014Phineas and FerbMr. Random (voice)Episode: "The Klimpaloon Ultimatum"
2015–2016The Nightly Show with Larry WilmoreHimself259 episodes; creator, executive producer Also appeared in 2 episodes as a guest
2015–presentThe Late Show with Stephen ColbertHimselfExecutive producer[undefined]Also appeared in 10 episodes as a guest
2015Gravity FallsJudge Kitty Kitty Meow Meow Face-Shwartstein (voice)Episode: "Weirdmageddon 2: Escape from Reality"


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