News broke in January 2024 that, after a decade away from the show, Jon Stewart would be returning as the host of The Daily Show one day a week through 2024. That news left some people confused because they thought Trevor Noah was still the host. Even those who knew that Trevor had left, wondered why he made that decision.
Trevor, who hosted the show for seven years immediately following Jon's exit, surprised both his audience and his crew with the announcement that he was leaving. Here's what we know about why he chose to leave, and why The Daily Show has been without a permanent host ever since.
Why did Trevor Noah leave 'The Daily Show'?
When Trevor announced that he was leaving the show, he made the decision not to tell anyone before he made the announcement on air. At the time, Trevor explained that the main reason he wanted to leave was so that he could have new experiences that The Daily Show didn't allow him to have. He wanted to travel and go on tour as a standup more than he had while hosting the show.
“Maybe this comes with not being raised in America, but I believe that everything should end,” Trevor told The Hollywood Reporter at the time. “A lot of American business and American media is just like, ‘Keep it going as long as possible,’ but I think it’s healthy for things to end when they’re still in a good place. I want to leave before I’m burnt out, because there are many other things I’d like to do.”
Trevor also said that the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermath had made working on the show very different and much more isolating.
"Now, everybody in the building has masks and we’re limited in how many people can be there at a given time and where you can or can’t be, and because I’m the host, I’m in this bubble. They’re all like, ‘He cannot get COVID.’ And so, what was already an isolated experience was exacerbated, and all of these things just add up," he explained.
Trevor wanted to keep himself distinct from the show.
While Jon hosted the show for more than a decade, Trevor and his team wanted to ensure that he wasn't tied down by his work on the series.
"At the end of his career, he’s Trevor Noah and, yes, he hosted The Daily Show,” says Derek Van Pelt, one of Trevor's managers “whereas if you host The Daily Show for 25 years, you’re The Daily Show‘s Trevor Noah, which is not what he is or what we wanted him to be.”
Jon likely never thought he would return to the show in a hosting capacity once he left, but his career has been rocky ever since his departure. He hosted a series on Apple that was short-lived, and he hasn't found other work in his post Daily Show life that's sustainable. Trevor is likely hoping that his career doesn't follow a similar trajectory.