Leno Says Goodbye to Late-Night

Jay Leno leaves the Tonight Show

In Jay Leno's final "Tonight Show" monologue on Friday, he gave a big thanks to the people who helped make his show a hit -- Michael Jackson, Monica Lewinsky and former President Bill Clinton.

Leno took over the late-night talk show from Johnny Carson in 1992. He told the audience, "When we started this show my hair was black and the president was white. When we started the show, Jon and Kate were both eight."

Jay welcomed his successor Conan O'Brien, thanked the viewers, his staff of writers, Kevin Eubanks and his band, the crew and his wife. The 59-year-old wrapped the show by saying, "When times are serious, you make silly jokes. When times are silly, you make serious jokes. But you always want to have jokes." Jay continued, "That's what we've been trying to do for the last 17 years -- make you laugh. And it's been an honor and a privilege to do that."

Friday's show marked the 3,775th taping of "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno."

Leno will move to primetime for an hour-long comedy show at 10 PM on NBC this fall.