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The Tonight Show with Jay Leno

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Jay Leno’s final Friday Tonight Show delivered its highest overnight rating in 15 months on Friday night, while Late Night With Jimmy Fallon generated its biggest metered-market household rating in nearly four years.

Jay Leno earned a 3.9 rating/9 share in the 56 metered-market households, the late-night talk show’s top results since Wednesday October 24, 2012, when President Barack Obama guested (4.0/10). It was the actually the highest Friday Tonight Show With Jay Leno rating since July 27, 2012, the night of the London Olympics Opening Ceremony (4.0/13).

Jimmy Fallon received a 2.2/7 in households on Friday, his highest rating in the markets metered by Nielsen since Friday, February 12, 2010, the night of the Vancouver Olympics Opening Ceremony (2.5/9).

Jay Leno welcomed animal expert Dave Salmoni and his lions on Friday night

Jay Leno welcomed animal expert Dave Salmoni and his lions on Friday night

Tim Allen, animal expert Dave Salmoni and musical guest Sara Bareilles were Jay Leno’s guests Friday night. As for Jimmy Fallon, he welcomed David Beckham, David Steinberg and musical guest Busta Rhymes with his house band The Roots.


Jay Leno’s final Tonight Show will air Thursday, February 6, with special guest Billy Crystal.

Billy Crystal was the very first Tonight Show guest 22 years ago when Jay Leno took over.

Jimmy Fallon’s final Late Night will be the following evening, Friday, February 7, when he will take a bow with pal Andy Samberg and the Muppets.

Jimmy Fallon takes over The Tonight Show on February 17, when his guests will be Will Smith and U2.

Seth Meyers takes over Late Night the following week, debuting with guest Amy Poehler.

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George W. Bush revealed his painting hobby, talked about his granddaughter and poked fun at his post-White House years on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno last night.

The former president said that he was inspired to take up painting after reading a Winston Churchill essay.

When he hired an instructor for weekly lessons, the 43rd president said he told her: “There’s a Rembrandt trapped in this body. Your job is to find it.”

George W. Bush, 67, shared paintings of his dog Barney and a stray cat that he adopted and named Bob said painting has changed his life.

George W. Bush presented Jay Leno with a portrait of the comedian

George W. Bush presented Jay Leno with a portrait of the comedian

He presented Jay Leno with a portrait of the comedian, prompting him to say: “I can’t make fun of him now.”

When asked what caused a blocked artery that led to his hospitalization in August, George W. Bush joked that it was because he “didn’t behave that well when I was younger and I might have smoked some”.

George W. Bush has kept a mostly low profile since exiting office in early 2009 while the country was in two wars and struggling with an economic crisis.

“It’s hard for some to believe, but I think eight years in the spotlight’s enough,” he said.

Former First Lady Laura Bush also appeared on Jay Leno’s show to discuss the couple’s charitable causes. They also showed the strand of pearls George W. Bush gave her for their 36th wedding anniversary and a video clip of their first grandchild, nicknamed Mila.

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