Letterman Seeks More Than $16M after 20 Years in TV

Article excerpt

THE AMERICAN chat show host David Letterman plans to celebrate 20 years in the role by negotiating a contract that is likely to make him the highest-paid television presenter.

Letterman, who made his debut on late night television on NBC in 1982 and moved to CBS in 1993, passed the 20-year milestone with last night's broadcast of Late Show with David Letterman.

His current contract, worth an estimated $16m (pounds 11.3m) a year, will expire this summer. His spokesman told the Hollywood Reporter magazine: "We're talking with CBS." The network's executives declined to comment.

If he is successful, Letterman will earn more than Katie Couric, the 44-year-old presenter of Today, who amid much furore signed a contract said to be worth between $13m (pounds 9.2m) and $16m with NBC news last year.

Letterman's 20-year stint is a long one, even by the standards of American television, and there had been reports that he might want a new direction. …