Over the past few years, The Daily Show has grown into a cultural phenomenon and a political powerhouse. Stewart often interviews world leaders, and candidates for political office routinely stop by, often to court the show’s enormous young audience. But when The Daily Show began, in 1996, with Craig Kilborn at the helm, Comedy Central was a tiny network with few cable subscribers.
Lizz Winstead, co-creator of The Daily Show, writes in her new memoir, "Lizz Free or Die," that the show's remarkable success was predicated on the "gold mine of comedy material" on television news. "What I never could have predicted was how successful the show would become," she writes. "Not because I ever doubted Jon, but because I never envisioned the news media would be so derelict."
In addition to her work on The Daily Show, Winstead has created and produced shows for Comedy Central, the Oxygen network and MTV. She also co-founded Air America Radio, is a frequent guest on MSNBC, and performs stand-up comedy across the country.