The Colbert Report’s First Head Writer Remembers the Show’s Early Days and the Correspondents’ Dinner

December 17, 2014 5:06 PM

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On December 18, after ten seasons and over 1,400 episodes, The Colbert Report will come to a close. Allison Silverman was the show's first co-head writer and eventually its executive producer, working on the show from 2005–2009. She's credited for coming up with the character-defining idea of having Stephen Colbert come out to the interview desk to greet the guest, as opposed to the other way around, the late-night standard. Mike Sacks, author of two books of interviews with comedy writers, And Here's the Kicker and Poking a Dead Frog, spoke with Silverman for this as-told-to piece.

The First Episode and Starting Out I joined The Colbert Report in August 2005, about two months before it went on the air. It was definitely no sure thing. Comedy Central only guaranteed 32 episodes, eight weeks of shows. And I was leaving Late Night With Conan O’Brien, a great writing job that was ...

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