Lance SmithAfter nearly a decade of hosting CMT's weekly 'Top 20 Countdown,' host Lance Smith has decided to move on. Lance joined the CMT family in 2001 as the network's first VJ. He quickly became a fan favorite and extended his television face-time by covering the red carpet at other industry functions, including the CMA Awards, ACM Awards, Grammy Awards, American Music Awards, and of course, the CMT Music Awards.

"I'll continue to pursue a place in front of a mic or camera, but it will be under a different set of lights," explains Lance, who recently hosted his 400th episode of the countdown. "Once upon a time, before my decade-long stint as a host, I was an actor, and it's time to wear that hat once again. I will forever be grateful for every chance and opportunity given to me by CMT and country music. There's not a better fan base in the world."

"Growing up before our viewers' eyes, Lance has developed remarkable versatility -- sly humor, perfect timing, strong relationships with our stars, and the ability to gracefully handle everything we've thrown at him," says CMT president, Brian Philips. "He leaves Top 20 at the height of its biggest rating streak ever, and his shoes will be hard to fill. We applaud his ambition and look forward to the next great phase of Lance's career. His extended family at CMT and MTV Networks thank him for his terrific run."

Lance is currently working on an independent film being shot in the Nashville area.