David Letterman is expected to announce plans to retire next year on tonight's Late Show.

The host, who has been on CBS since 1993 after being passed over by NBC as Johnny Carson's successor, made the announcement to his studio audience at Thursday's taping. Word spread rapidly on social media. Musician Mike Mills, a guest on the show, sent a tweet, and a CBS executive confirmed the news, although there is no word on exact timing.

Spokesman for Letterman and CBS did not return calls seeking comment.

Letterman, 66, appeared on NBC's Late Night for a decade prior to his CBS run, but NBC chose Jay Leno as Carson's successor, leading Letterman to depart.

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