"I'm Jimmy Fallon," he said, before a witty reference to his predecessor, Jay Leno: "I'll be your host — for now.”
Thus began the former host of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon’s spectacular Tonight Show debut on Monday, Feb. 17, which was chock full of celebrity cameos, topical jokes and poignant moments.
The 39-year-old's highly-anticipated opening night had no shortage of star power. In a hilarious skit titled, ‘The Evolution of Hip-Hop dancing,' an overalls-clad Will Smith joined Jimmy for an energetic succession of choreographed dance moves that included, but were not limited to: “The Robot,” “The Cabbage Patch,” “The Dougie” and “The Twerk."
Robert Deniro emerged briefly to repay a bet he’d lost (“To my buddy who said I’d never be the host of The Tonight Show… you owe me a hundred bucks,” Jimmy quipped, before the actor materialized onstage to pony up). This was followed by a cavalcade of A-list appearances, including Rudolph Giuliani, Lindsay Lohan, Kim Kardashian, Mariah Carey, Joan Rivers and Stephen Colbert.
Rock band U2 performed a brand new song, Invisible, on the roof of the Rockefeller Center against the New York City skyline — a testament to the show's new backdrop, having previously been shot out of Los Angeles — as well as a mesmerizing, acoustic version of their Oscar-nominated song “Ordinary Love” from the couch.
"I just want to do the best I can and take care of this show for a while," Jimmy said. "If you guys let me stick around long enough, maybe I'll get the hang of it."
Watch Jimmy kick off the show below.