Jay Leno saying goodbye to the Tonight Show after 17 years - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Jay Leno saying goodbye to the Tonight Show after 17 years

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By Stephanie Stanton

LOS ANGELES (NBC) - Jay Leno is saying goodbye to late night TV and will soon be moving to brand-new prime-time show on NBC. 

Fans lined up early, some even camping out overnight, to get a front row seat and give a warm send-off to their favorite comedian.

"I've watched since I was four or five now, I grew up on Leno, so I gotta see him before he's off the air" said one fan waiting for tickets.

"I was here for the last week of Carson, I stuck around for the first show of Jay Leno and now that he is leaving, I had to come down to see the last show" said another fan.

Nearly two decades ago Leno made his debut as host of "The Tonight Show", taking over for the legendary Johnny Carson.

Now it's Leno's turn to step down. He's leaving the iconic late night chair to make way for Conan O'Brien, who begins his reign starting Monday.

"When you hand it off to the next person - whew! - I kept it number one for my 17 years - GO! - you've got it now! And that is kind of what it is" said Leno.

From comedy bits to celebrity interviews, and even a sit-down with President Obama, Leno is considered one of the most popular hosts, and chins, on television.

For his final show Leno is promising something really unusual and personal, including an appearance by the guy taking over for him.

"You know it's a real honor to me that I was asked. Getting to be the last guest on Jay's final show after 17 years, it's a big deal. I was thrilled to be asked and immediately said yes" said Conan O'Brien, who takes over the Tonight Show on Monday night.

But this goodbye is really more of a "see ya later" because Jay will be coming back to host his own prime-time variety show this fall on NBC.

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