Jay Leno–one of the most financially successful comedians in history–was awarded the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. Leno was toasted and roasted by famous guests at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC as part of the honor. The program will air on PBS on November 23. Leno joins Ellen DeGeneres, Carol Burnett, Bob Newhart, Steve Martin and Bill Cosby, among other recipients of the prize. Leno’s chief TV rival David Letterman hasn’t yet received it, and will probably be fuming–as he did for 30 years after losing The Tonight Show to Leno in the early 1990s.
Jimmy Fallon, who took over for Leno at NBC, said Leno was “a man who has done so much for NBC, so much that we had to celebrate his career on PBS.”