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Jimmy Kimmel Was Planning On Retiring From Late Night, Why The Strike Might Have Changed His Mind

 Jimmy Kimmel sitting at his desk during an introduction in Jimmy Kimmel Live.
Jimmy Kimmel sitting at his desk during an introduction in Jimmy Kimmel Live.

The world of late night television remains on hold as the 2023 WGA writers strike continues to fairer wages and conditions. In the wake of this strike action, the top late night hosts have teamed up for a podcast to help support their writers. As a result, there are some interesting stories that have cropped up, such as Jimmy Kimmel admitting that he almost retired from his hit show Jimmy Kimmel Live!. However, the current strike condition may have changed his mind on that matter.

As Kimmel participated in Spotify’s new series Strike Force Five, the ABC host sat down with co-hosts Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, Seth Meyers and John Oliver to talk shop. Just one episode in, the veteran of The Man Show dished the details on this potential exit strategy, as well as the following reasons why he might not follow through:

As you know, I was very intent on retiring right around the time where the strike started. Now I realized ‘Oh yeah, it’s kind of nice to work.’ When you are working you think about not working.

Whispers of Jimmy Kimmel’s potential retirement are certainly nothing new, as there have been a couple points in time where that scenario has been floated. 2019 saw ABC brass actively negotiating to keep Jimmy Kimmel Live! “for years to come.” Kimmel himself addressed that scenario in 2022, stating that “being wanted is important too.” But as he admitted in Strike Force Five, Jimmy hadn't told anyone publicly about this new round of thought.

It looks like one of the “Late Night Jimmys” has learned a lesson and wants to keep going with his career for a little longer. That’s totally relatable, as a break such as the one caused by the writers strike has shown Jimmy Kimmel just how much he does enjoy his spot in the talk show firmament.

Seth Meyers of Late Night with Seth Meyers fame compared Jimmy Kimmel’s continued dance with retirement to a familiar example in this discussion. Going as far as calling the ABC host “the Tom Brady of late night,” Kimmel went further with that image and responded with this:

I’m Tom Brady without any rings, or fingers.

Bringing this private matter to public attention, Jimmy Kimmel may have given this ongoing strike action a silver lining. While it’s unfortunate that negotiations have stalled out, there is some good in knowing that when a deal is finally reached, hosts like Mr. Kimmel will be excited to get back together with their writing teams.

Though Jimmy Kimmel Live! and the rest of the late night landscape is currently dark, there are still some new and exciting options on the horizon of the 2023 TV schedule. Let’s just hope for a swift and fair resolution that makes all sides happy and turns the lights back on in the world of TV and movies.