Apr. 28th, 1950
New Rochelle, New York, USA
Guest TV Roles
The Crimson Chin
Jay Leno began his career in night clubs, where he worked 300 nights a year before hitting it big in 1992 with his own late-night talk show, "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" (1992). By that time he had appeared on television, acted in a few films (American Hot Wax (1978)) but hit paydirt with his late-night television appearances (he made a record number of visits to "Late Night with David Letterman" (1982)); for several years, he served as Johnny Carson (I)'s permanent guest host on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson" (1962). A big, sweet guy with a very good comedy routine, he vied with David Letterman to inherit Carson's seat when Johnny retired in 1992. His victory was well-publicized, but empty, though he did gain a measure of revenge when his show beat Letterman's for the Emmy in 1995. Though he consistently lost in the ratings to Letterman except on special occasions, like Hugh Grant (I)'s first TV appearance after his encounter with Divine Brown (I), he surged ahead in 1996, as CBS plunged further into oblivion.
- Maintaining classic cars and motorcycles is one of Jay's hobbies.
- Is a "seasoned" Monopoly player; likes to play with real money and the "race car" is his favorite playing piece.
- A 1972 graduate of Emerson College in Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
- He and his wife of many years have no children.
- Is one of the few owners of the McLaren F1 supercar.
- Driver of Pace Car at 83rd Indianapolis 500; May 30, 1999.
- "The Mike Douglas Show"(1961) was the first talk show appearance for Jay Leno which aired on October 19, 1977. Danny Thomas and Teddy Pendergrass were also guests.
- Met his wife while performing at a comedy club in Los Angeles. Mavis was in the audience, and she laughed at all his jokes at the right time.