After 14 years at the helm of Jimmy Kimmel Live! and a 25-year career in late-night, Jill Leiderman is stepping down as executive producer of the Jimmy Kimmel-headlined ABC talk show.
She will be succeeded in the job by Sharon Hoffman, former executive producer of Entertainment Tonight and CBS Evening News‘ weekend edition.
Upon graduating from Northwestern University in 1993, Leiderman landed a job as a production assistant on The Jon Stewart Show on MTV. She spent two years with Stewart, who would go on to anchor The Daily Show, on both the MTV and syndicated incarnations of his program. After the end of The Jon Stewart Show in 1995, Leiderman was hired by Late Show with David Letterman as as a writers’ researcher. During her 8½-year stint on the CBS late-night talker, she rose to senior writers’ producer.
In 2004, Leiderman switched gears, joining VH1 as a development executive. She was lured back to late-night two years later when she was approached by Kimmel. Launched in 2003, Jimmy Kimmel Live! at the time was still struggling to break through the old guard in late-night, establish an identity and book A-list guests. With Leiderman on board, JKL evolved into a late-night stalwart and one of the first shows to harness the power of online viewing with viral videos like 2009’s “F*@#ing Matt Damon.”
“I could not be more thankful for what Jill has done for our show and could not have asked for a better partner over the past 14 years,” Kimmel said. “Her contributions to the growth of JKL are immeasurable, including finding her worthy successor, Sharon Hoffman. We were very lucky to have Jill as long as we did and, while I am sad to see her go, I understand. I am sick of me too.”
Hoffman will serve as executive producer alongside Kimmel at JKL. Kimmel and Leiderman began to plan the EP transition a year ago “so I could pursue other opportunities on my creative wish list while spending more time with my husband and 4-year-old son,” Leiderman said, hinting that the late-night chapter in her career mightbe closed.
“For 25 years, I have devoted my career to late-night, producing for three of the greats: Jon Stewart, David Letterman and Jimmy Kimmel,” she said. “Jimmy changed my life indelibly. I am tremendously proud of the stellar team we have built together over the past 14 years producing close to 2,500 original Jimmy Kimmel Live! episodes and specials.” Leiderman said, adding, “My professional partnership with Jimmy will only be outdone by our friendship.”
Hoffman is an Emmy-winning veteran TV producer with experience in live, video and digital production. Most recently, she served as the executive producer of Entertainment Tonight from 2016-19. Before that she was executive producer of the weekend editions of CBS Evening News.
Like the current Late Show executive producer Chris Licht and recent Tonight Show exec producer Jim Bell, Hoffman has producing experience in broadcast morning news shows. She was part of the team that relaunched CBS This Morning in 2012 and also did a stint at ABC’s Good Morning America.
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