Stephen Colbert's ready to fill Letterman's 'huge shoes' and 'really big pants' 

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By Ree Hines

On Thursday afternoon, the news broke that Comedy Central's Stephen Colbert would make the move to CBS to fill David Letterman's empty seat in 2015. By Thursday night, Colbert and a couple of his pals took to their respective shows to chime in on the late-night shakeup.

"Late Show's" next host started off with a tribute to the man he's set to replace.

"I am going to miss this good man," Colbert said of Letterman. "Dave has been on the air my entire adult life — 'Late Night' debuted my first year in college. I learned more from watching Dave than I did from going to my classes. Especially the ones I did not go to because I had stayed up until 1:30 watching Dave."

Colbert went on to say the Letterman influenced all of the hosts who've hit the air since he first found fame "and even a few who came before him; he's that good."

In fact, Letterman's so good, Colbert expressed sympathy for the person who takes the veteran talker's chair — himself.

"Folks, those are some huge shoes to fill," he said before gesturing toward Letterman's Worldwide Pants production logo and adding, "and some really big pants."

While Colbert looked toward a future beyond his Comedy Central show, "The Colbert Report," over on the "Daily Show," Jon Stewart looked back at the host who got his late-night start by his side.

"You may remember a few years back there was a gentleman on this program by the name of Stephen Colbert," Stewart said, calling his friend a "very talented actor, writer, dancer (and) improvisational comedian."

After playing highlights from Colbert's early days, Stewart celebrated the "Late Show" shift.

"The exciting news today is I no longer need a cable subscription for the privilege of watching Stephen Colbert," he added.

"The Tonight Show's" Jimmy Fallon had an announcement of his own Thursday.

"Starting in 2015, I will be the new host of 'The Colbert Report' on Comedy Central," Fallon joked.

He went on to congratulate Colbert, with whom he's shared a few mock battles with in the past — including one involving their dueling Ben & Jerry's ice cream flavors (Colbert's Americone Dream versus Fallon's Late Night Snack). But if anyone is expecting a late-night war when they go head-to-head on broadcast next year, they've got another think coming.

"I just want to say there's not going to be any war," Fallon insisted. "It'll be a dance-off!"

And when Colbert and Fallon dance, everyone wins.