News correspondent Jessica Williams will leave “The Daily Show” after this Thursday’s episode to develop her own projects with Comedy Central. Williams joined “The Daily Show” in 2012 at the age of 22, making her the youngest correspondent in the show’s history and the first black woman as well. Williams quickly gained popularity on the show for her insightful commentary and funny delivery, so much so that fans rooted for her to take over the late night show following previous host Jon Stewart’s departure.
Now, Williams is getting the chance to work on her own titles at the same network.
After she leaves “The Daily Show,” Williams will write, produce and star in a half-hour scripted pilot about a socially-conscious twenty-something who’s still figuring out her life.
In an interview with EW, Williams describes the show as follows: “I’ve had this idea for a while about a young woman who is a feminist and who imagines herself to be “woke.” I think that a lot of the time, we have this idea that when you are, like, “woke”…that you should always have your shit together. But I know that often for me, as a black woman of color, I feel like I’m supposed to represent these ideals and values that I was taught as a young lady. Like I’m supposed to carry myself in a special type of way, but oftentimes I’m, like… I’m still in my 20s, and still kind of a mess.” The currently-untitled series will also be co-written and produced by Naomi Ekperigin, a writer for “Broad City” and “Difficult People.”
“The Daily Show” first premiered in 1996 with host Craig Kilborn. Jon Stewart took over for Kilborn in 1999 and held the position until just last year. During his tenure, the series became a mainstay on Comedy Central and gained widespread popularity for its dynamic, nuanced political commentary and satire, especially during the Bush administration. Last year, newcomer Trevor Noah has taken over hosting duties from Stewart.
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“The Daily Show” airs weeknights at 11PM Eastern only on Comedy Central.