Here’s an unfortunate bit of news here for David Letterman’s final run in late night: longtime Late Show cue card handler Tony Mendez has been fired from the show. According to Deadline, Mendez assaulted Emmy award-winning staff writer Bill Scheft following an argument and was notified Monday that he’d be left go from the show. From Deadline:
Mendez, 69, who had been with Letterman for 21 years, got into a verbal altercation with Scheft and Letterman over changes in cue cards, went home overnight and stewed about perceived slights from Scheft over a long period. When Mendez came back the next day, he grabbed Scheft by his shirt and pushed him against a wall, the Post reported…
A representative for Letterman’s Worldwide Pants, which produces The Late Show, said the company cannot comment on a confidential personnel matter.
Cameras frequently cut to Mendez during the show’s broadcasts as he handled Letterman’s cue cards. Mendez previously handled cue cards for Saturday Night Live and The Hollywood Palace.
Letterman would sometimes use Mendez in bits on the show, referring to him as the resident “cue card boy” and sometimes sending him out to film other segments. Mendez also had a long-running behind the scenes show titled The Tony Mendez Show that was normally uploaded with the rest of The Late Show clips the following day. The show will cover his salary and benefits through Letterman’s departure.