Pop Culture

Bill Murray channels Liberace to celebrate 20 years of 'Letterman' on CBS

Bill Murray will always love David Letterman. Always.

Cue the bling! David Letterman received quite the flamboyant celebration of "Late Show's" 20th anniversary on CBS Thursday night in the form of Bill Murray — dressed as Liberace.

The comedic actor, who was Letterman's very first guest on Aug. 30, 1993, rolled onto the stage in a white Rolls-Royce with his very own blond chauffeur and adorable white poodle. 

"I had to make some sort of sign of how I felt, and I go over the top sometimes," Murray told his host. "I give and I give and I've done it again. And this time ... I want to show Dave what I got him, and I want all the people to see it."

The big surprise? A billboard featuring the actor's mug and name in huge letters ... with "wishes Dave a Happy 20th Anniversary" in minuscule type. 

But that wasn't all the actor had in store for the late-night host's big anniversary. He also excavated a time capsule near Letterman's desk that contained "artifacts" from his first appearance. "This is insane!" the host exclaimed as Murray-as-Liberace used a pickaxe and jackhammer to retrieve the buried mementos.

Still, Murray had more. The actor, by then out of breath, had one more elaborate gift up his white sleeve: his rendition of the No. 1 hit 20 years ago -- Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You."

Murray may be a funny man, but Liberace's singing chops he does not possess.

"Oh Bill, that was so wonderful!" Letterman exclaimed of the less than stellar but mighty amusing performance.

In Letterman's 20 years behind CBS' "Late Show" desk, he has broadcast 3,897 episodes. The program has also won nine Emmys and has been nominated 73 times.

"Late Show With David Letterman" airs weeknights at 11:35 p.m. on CBS.