Prime screens The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon this month.

Arguably the funniest and most versatile of the current crop of American talkshow hosts is finally coming to New Zealand television, with Prime to begin screening The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon.

The Tonight Show has been an American television institution since 1954, with Fallon taking over from Jay Leno in 2010.

The show's longest-running host was Johnny Carson between 1962 and 1992 before Leno.

Previously a cast member of Saturday Night Live, Fallon was the host of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon from 2009 until he shifted to the earlier slot.

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Fallon's comedic talents extend to spot-on impressions and music - he has performed duets with everyone from Bruce Springsteen to Miley Cyrus to Barbra Streisand and performed on stage with both Michelle and Barack Obama.

His skits regularly achieve five million-plus views on YouTube.

Prime will be moving The Late Show with David Letterman, which is in its final year with its veteran host, to 3.30pm.

The channel will screen Fallon's show from the previous night US time in a 10.30pm slot with a repeat at 6pm the following evening.

The season, starting October 20, begins with a week of highlights from earlier shows.