One of the most talented and most controversial figures of current German TV.
Schmidt is a show host, a comic, an actor, an impersonator, and, what is often ignored, a pretty good musician, too. After several other ventures, mainly the cult comedy show Schmidteinander, Schmidt was to host the first (and so far is the only) German late night show in the spirit of David Letterman or Jay Leno. His dry wit and absolutely limitless, utterly politically incorrect irony has caused numerous little scandals such as guests walking out on him on the show.
Currently, he is being a bit less offensive (but he still is). His latest idea is to have unmotivated cultural intermezzi in his show, such as taking singing lessons, discussing Thomas Bernhard's diaries with one of his friends or reading poetry aloud, all in front of the studio audience. This has made him the darling of the German intelligentsia which is still trying to figure out whether he is truly going to be the messiah of culture in a nation menaced by horrors such as the afternoon talk show circuit or the Big Brother show, or if all he's doing is just some kind of enormous, very elaborate joke.
As of May 2001, the next literary feat on his show will be a recital of part of Martin Walser's latest, yet-unpublished novel.