Mike Rowe has become a blue collar icon after getting famous off hosting shows like Dirty Jobs and CNN’s Somebody’s Gotta Do It. In recent years, he has become known for his unapologetically conservative views and his hard-working values.
This week, Rowe revealed that he was once tapped to host Comedy Central’s The Daily Show before Jon Stewart got the job. According to Mediaite, when a fan asked Rowe on a Facebook page, the television host posted the following image along with the story of what happened:
“Unless you’re a robot or a psychopath, it’s very hard to not take a personal rejection personally. The hardest one for me to accept is explained in this letter, which I received 17 years ago from a very decent Executive Producer at The Daily Show. It’s one of the nicest rejection letters I’ve ever received, but it was nevertheless devastating, because I knew then with certainty that this was my ‘dream job.’
When The Daily Show was first conceived, Comedy Central spent a year looking for the right host. The audition process was extensive, and when the dust settled, it came down to two – Craig Kilborn and me. The job went to Craig, and I was crushed.”
A year later, Kilborn left the show, and Rowe went in to give it another shot.
“I went in for another audition. This time, I wasn’t going to let it get away. I did the very best job I could, and all modesty aside, I killed it.
Afterwards, I was told by the producers and writers that I was about to become the new host of The Daily Show, unless – by some miracle – Comedy Central were to suddenly cough up the kind of money that could entice a proven entity like Dennis Miller or Jon Stewart. Of course, we all know which way the mop flopped, and I was once again, devastated.”
Luckily, Rowe has gone on to have an extremely successful career himself. We’re glad he can now look back and laugh about this difficult rejection. Imagine how different things would be if he had become host of The Daily Show!