In the first big cross-network programming initiative, Al Roker announced this morning that he will be hosting a new daily program on the Weather Channel, one hour before the Today show begins. “Wake up With Al” will be hosted by Roker and co-hosted by The Weather Channel’s Stephanie Abrams weekday mornings at 6amET. “We’ll be doing it here in New York live and down at The Weather Channel,” said Roker as he broke the news during the Today show this morning.
“I’m so excited to be working with you,” said Abrams adding, “We’ll go live to the field to all the big weather events happening all around the country. Most importantly, we’ll have a lot of fun with the weather. The weather doesn’t always have to be so serious,” she said.
The show will premiere this summer with no firm launch date given.
NBCU, along with private equity firms Blackstone Group and Bain Capital acquired The Weather Channel last July.
Press release after the jump…
AL ROKER TO HOST WAKE UP WITH AL WEEKDAY MORNINGS
ON THE WEATHER CHANNEL
ATLANTA, APRIL 29, 2009 – Al Roker, widely recognized as America’s favorite weatherman, has been named host of Wake Up With Al, a new weekday morning program on The Weather Channel. Roker will join The Weather Channel’s Stephanie Abrams, who will serve as his co-host. The announcement was made today by Lisa Gersh, interim CEO of The Weather Channel. The one-hour program will air weekdays from 6-7 a.m. ET and premiere this summer.
“Simply put – Al Roker is synonymous with weather. He has an energy and a style that jumps off the screen, and we already know that people want to wake up with him in the morning,” said Gersh. “We have spent months coming up with the right way to integrate Al into The Weather Channel’s programming, and I think, alongside Stephanie, we’ve come up with the perfect formula with this announcement.”
Wake Up with Al will explore all aspects of the day’s weather, combining Roker’s warm style with the accuracy, dependability and expertise of The Weather Channel. He will appear both in the studio, interacting with guests and viewers, and in the field, reporting on the most compelling weather stories of the day.
“Over the years, I have been out covering the same snowstorms, hurricanes and tornado aftermath as the folks at The Weather Channel. It is really exciting to be working on The Weather Channel, bringing the best weather information to people as they start their day,” said Roker. “And now I get free baseball caps and fleeces from two of the best information networks in the world.”
Wake Up With Al will air live from both New York City and Atlanta. Abrams will report from Atlanta from the state-of-the-art TWC HD studio, equipped with a 37-foot wide video screen and true HD weather graphics that have revolutionized TV weather presentation. An experienced meteorologist and host, she has covered first hand the most significant storms of the last decade. That experience along with her boundless enthusiasm for weather and the science behind it make her the perfect partner for Roker.
Roker has been the weather and feature reporter on NBC News’ Today since January 1996. Until January of 2000, he also served as the weekday weather forecaster for News Channel 4′s early evening newscast Live at 5 on WNBC-TV, NBC’s flagship owned and operated station in New York City. Prior to joining WNBC, Roker worked as a weatherman for more than seven years. He is a recipient of the American Meteorological Society’s prestigious Seal of Approval and has been a pioneer in the use of computer graphics for weathercasting.
Roker has reported live for “Today” throughout the years from some of history’s worst storms including most recently when Hurricane Wilma threatened the Florida coast during one of the worst hurricane seasons on record. The seven time Emmy Award winner is a member of several professional organizations including the Friars Club, American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, the Screen Actors Guild and the American Meteorological Society.