Matt Lauer Leaving 'Today': NBC Denies Rumor, Says He's Not Being Replaced
With recent ratings struggles, the Today Show is undoubtedly looking for a way to shake things up and get back to being a popular, successful program. Recent rumors from various publications surrounding this predicament have people thinking that NBC is thinking about replacing host, Matt Lauer with popular TV journalist Anderson Cooper. In response to this kind of talk, NBC has recently spoken up and said it’s all false.
In addition to recent problems with their number of viewers, things have been a bit rocky at the Today Show when it comes to Lauer. There was a certain amount of drama within the show last June when then-anchor, Ann Curry left the show leaving the public with different opinions to why she was really exiting. Some thought it was Lauer pushing her out, a notion that is yet to be proven and certain people involved deny. Former NBC News president, Steve Capus said on the topic, “He was quietly and publicly a supporter of Ann’s throughout the entire process. It is unfair that Matt has shouldered an undue amount of blame for a decision he disagreed with.” Many people believe that their current decline in viewership is directly due to the absence of Curry. But is replacing Lauer really on the table?
NBC executive, Alexandra Wallace told The Hollywood Reporter, "As we've said before, Matt Lauer is the best in the business. We want him in the Today show anchor chair for many years to come. We are not considering replacing Matt Lauer." This statement comes after one by another NBC executive admitting that they are looking into finding replacements possibly from inside or outside the network.
So it sounds like although perhaps Lauer will be staying where he is, change is definitely on the horizon for this struggling network. NBC needs to make changes, especially after their rival, Good Morning America beat Today in total viewers for the first time in 17 years. It is no surprise to fans that this happened a month after Curry’s departure.
Recruiting Anderson Cooper to come on the show and spice things up would not be a terrible idea. Cooper is a crowd-pleaser with a relatively good reputation. Maybe he does have what it takes to turn things around at Today after all. Something has to happen to save NBC’s plummeting ratings, but only time will tell what that solution will be.