Scottish-born Ferguson, 51, told the studio audience during
the taping of his Monday show that he will be stepping down from
the show after nine years.
"CBS and I are not getting divorced, we are 'consciously
uncoupling,' but we will still spend holidays together and share
custody of the fake horse and robot skeleton, both of whom we
love very much," the comedian said in a statement.
Ferguson took the hosting helm on "The Late Late Show" in 2005,
picking up the reins from Craig Kilborn and lending his
eccentric, irreverent humor with his trademark Scottish brogue.
His decision to step down comes after major changes in broadcast
television's late night schedule, as CBS announced earlier this
month that Comedy Central's satirist Stephen Colbert will take
over from David Letterman on CBS's "The Late Show" next year.
The move is likely to give CBS a much-needed chance to lure
younger viewers to the late night television time slot.
[id:nL1N0MW03A] The network has not yet said who will take over
from Ferguson after his departure.
Comedian Jimmy Fallon succeeded Jay Leno on NBC's "The Tonight
Show" earlier this year, while former "Saturday Night Live" star
Seth Meyers replaced Fallon on NBC's "Late Night" show.
(Reporting by Piya Sinha-Roy; editing by Bernard Orr)
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