Jon Stewart, anchor of “The Daily Show” and co-author of the best-selling “America (The Book),” is adding “producer” to his list of titles. And he’s doing it on someone else’s dime.
Comedy Central says it has forged an agreement with Stewart to finance his production company, Busboy Productions. In return, the cable network where Stewart works will get the first shot at any TV project the company develops. Stewart and Ben Karlin, executive producer of “The Daily Show,” will head up the company.
“Jon Stewart is the preeminent voice in comedy today. As evidenced by the incredible success of ‘America (The Book),’ Jon and Ben have much more than a nightly TV show’s worth of comedy in them,” Comedy Central president Doug Herzog says. “We’re incredibly excited about the possibility of making more television with this exceptionally talented group of artists.”
Stewart has ventured into producing before, selling a pilot with fellow “Daily Show” funnyman Stephen Colbert to NBC in 2002. The show didn’t get off the ground.
“The Daily Show” enjoyed the best ratings of its eight-year existence in 2004, when its coverage of the presidential campaign helped it average better than a million viewers per night. Stewart’s contract with the show runs through 2008.