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TODAY   |  February 18, 2014

Jimmy Fallon makes star-studded ‘Tonight’ debut

The comedian made his first appearance as the new host of “The Tonight Show” host on Monday night. He returned the show to New York City with a slew of cameo appearances by stars, including Lady Gaga and Robert De Niro. NBC’s Katy Tur reports.

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>>> new era has dawned at our home there. jimmy fallon kicked off his " tonight show " hosting duties welcoming the show back to new york with a star-studded debut katy, good morning to you.

>> he introduced himself, 39 from new york , married with a brand new baby. and with that, after let's call it a 42-year vacation in los angeles , the " tonight show " has returned to its new york roots.

>> reporter: they called his name --

>> jimmy fallon !

>> reporter: the curtain opens --

>> i'm jimmy fallon and i'll be your host for now.

>> reporter: and jimmy fallon brought it home.

>> i'm lucky to say my parents are here with us, they're here tonight, here to see me, mom and dad . love you guys. i wish i could have gotten you better seats, but this is a very hot show , dad. very hot show .

>> reporter: on the inaugural night of his " tonight show ," a barrage of star power .

>> to my buddy who said i'd never be the host of the " tonight show ," you know who you are, you owe me 100 bucks, buddy.

>> 14 special guests paid up. de niro , fay, namath, giuliani, carey, morgan, rivers -- kardashian, rogen, lohan, parker, tyson, gaga and colbert.

>> welcome to 11:30 [ bleep ]!

>> reporter: only the sixth host in the show's history, fallon knows he's got big shoes to fill.

>> it's all starting to sink in now. it's becoming real. and you're going like, wow, i can see everything now. this is actually going to happen.

>> and monday night when it actually did, will smith was there to offer a big vote of confidence.

>> you know, the " tonight show " is big and it's historic, but people are coming because of your heart.

>> reporter: it was a show to make history as u2 not only performed live on stage , but also on the top of 30 rock itself. the empire state building and one world trade glittering behind them. no better way to welcome the " tonight show " home.

>> reporter: and guys, it's getting crowded around here. jimmy fallon , seth meyers starts next week. i'm told there's a small surprise when you come back from sochi. they've taken your office and converted it into a green room for all the big stars coming here, matt.

>> that's okay. that's all right.

>> u2 hanging out in the green room .

>> reporter: you might not be allowed in, but they'll be there.

>> all right. good, katy, thank you very much. that was an amazing show and they're probably waking up today going, you mean we have to do it again tonight?

>> right?

>> by the way, matt and al, you guys specifically your spandex get mentioned in the monologue.

>> happy to be part of it.

>> you are, indeed.

>> very proud.