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Top 10 Celebrity Farewell Tributes To David Letterman


The show has kept a pretty close secret about what's in store for the final episode. But, in the Letterman tradition, we’ve compiled our top 10 favorite celebrity tributes — which range from the heartfelt to the downright silly — below.

1. Bill Murray

The actor made a fitting guest for the penultimate episode, since he was the first guest on "The Late Show" back in 1993. Murray began Tuesday’s segment by emerging from a giant cake and rubbing frosting in Letterman’s hair.

2. Norm MacDonald

The stand-up comic and long-time "Saturday Night Live" regular gave Letterman a teary send-off, calling him “the greatest talk show host who ever lived.”

3. President Obama

Letterman and Obama talked retirement during the President's May 5 visit, joking about hanging out at Starbucks and playing dominoes together. Obama had some kind parting words for the host, saying, “You’re a part of all of us. You’ve given us a great gift and we love you.”

4. George Clooney

Clooney did his best to prevent the late-night host from going off the air by handcuffing Letterman’s wrist to his own, telling him, “You’re not going anywhere.”

5. Tina Fey

Fey is tired of donning fancy dresses to make her frequent appearances on Letterman’s show. Saying she’ll no longer dress up for a late night show now that he’s retiring, she stripped down onstage to reveal elaborate undergarments that read, “Bye Dave/#lastdressever.”

6. Bill Clinton

The former President talked to Letterman about Hillary’s presidential campaign and their grandkids. When asked for the percentage chance he’ll move back to the White House, Clinton responded, “If she wins the election, the chances are 100 percent I’ll move back — if I’m asked.”

7. Tom Hanks

Hanks taught Letterman to use a selfie stick during his appearance, snapping a photo and encouraging the host to bring one with him on his retirement vacation. “When you, in a couple weeks, head down to — I’m just going to guess what you’re going to be up to — Space Camp, take one of these bad boys with you.”

8. Julia Roberts

Roberts reminisced with Letterman about her many past appearances on the show and their ongoing for-the-cameras flirtation. Before leaving, she gave Letterman one last kiss.

9. Amy Sedaris

The comic, who said she was on the show 34 times since 2001, sang a medley in honor of Letterman's departure. She told him he'd be missed, and was "a New York scaffolding."

10. Steve Martin

Martin created a special farewell video for his long-time friend, envisioning Letterman's life in retirement. According to the comic, Letterman can look forward to a future of playing penny slots at casinos and eating early-bird specials at the Golden Corral.

About The Author


Allegra Kirkland is a New York-based reporter for Talking Points Memo. She previously worked on The Nation’s web team and as the associate managing editor for AlterNet. Follow her on Twitter @allegrakirkland.