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Jon Stewart’s Hosting Hiatus Dates Set

‘The Daily Show’ host is making a flick about an imprisoned Iranian journalist

Adam Chandler
April 25, 2013

Last month, it was reported that The Daily Show host Jon Stewart would be taking an unprecedented break from his hosting duties over the summer to make his directorial debut. Stewart’s (quite serious) project is a film called “Rosewater” about the life of Maziar Bahari.

A Canadian-Iranian journalist and documentarian, Mr. Bahari was jailed in Tehran in 2009 for four months, accused of plotting a revolution against the government. Shortly before his arrest, Mr. Bahari had participated in a “Daily Show” sketch, conducted by one of the show’s correspondents, Jason Jones, who was pretending to be a spy. Mr. Bahari’s captors used the footage against him.

“You can imagine how upset we were,” Mr. Stewart said, “and I struck up a friendship with him afterward.”

In a letter to publicists this week, the Daily Show confirmed that correspondent John Oliver would take over hosting duties from Stewart on June 10 and would lead the show until September when Stewart is expected to return. Minus the two weeks that the popular show takes off in the summer, Daily Show addicts will have to cope with the absence of J-Stew’s blend of terrible impersonations, self-lacerating Jewish jokes, and high caliber interviews for the first time in 14 years.

It’s a cruel world.

Adam Chandler was previously a staff writer at Tablet. His work has appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Atlantic, Slate, Esquire, New York, and elsewhere. He tweets @allmychandler.