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Posts Tagged ‘Al Roker’

‘Today’ Gears Up For 20th Halloween Celebration

NEWToday-Show-HalloweenThe “Today” show is gearing up for its 20th Halloween celebration. You can expect elaborate costumes, pop-culture references and quite possibly, Matt Lauer in drag this Friday.

With the exception of 2012, when the Halloween celebration was canceled due to Hurricane Sandy, the “Today” cast has been dressing up every year in extravagant costumes since 1994. From “Star Wars” characters in 2009, the Royal Family in 2011 to “The Flintstones,” the NBC morning show spares no expense when it comes to original Halloween costumes.

Remember Lauer and Al Roker dressing up as Jennifer Lopez and Sean “Puff Daddy” Combs back in 2000.

The “Today” show’s official website takes a look at all 20 years of outrageous costumes.

What should the “Today” cast dress as this year? Tweet us your ideas @TVNewser

‘Today’ Host Tamron Hall Injured During Haunted House Tour

“Today” show third hour co-anchor Tamron Hall took one for the team this weekend.

Doctors diagnosed Hall with a deep muscle tear developed from screaming too much during a weekend trip to a haunted house. Al Roker, Natalie Morales and Willie Geist joined Hall for a taping at the Brighton Asylum haunted house in Passaic, New Jersey Friday night. On the way home Hall complained of stomach pain, which got worse into Saturday morning.

I was really in so much pain, went to the hospital, didn’t tell my mom until now, because she would have been hysterical. Went to the hospital, had a sonogram, blood work, the whole nine yards. I have a deep muscle tear.

The house takes an estimated 20 minutes to complete and Hall was apparently screaming the entire time. The segment will air later this week.

The Morning Ticker: Roker Jokes, Ross Investigates, ‘Hambycast’ in Iowa

  • On “Today,” Al Roker announced a USO comedy tour in the Middle East next month as part of the “Shine a Light” series. Jay Leno, who appeared with Roker this morning, will headline. Other performers include Kevin Eubanks, Craig Robinson and Iliza Shlesinger.

  • ABC’s Brian Ross appeared on “Good Morning America” this morning to report on his investigation into faulty highway guard rails across the country. In some cases, defective rails have gone through drivers’ cars, severing body parts. Ross will report on the story on tonight’s “World News Tonight” and 20/20.

  • FishbowlDC reports on CNN’s “Hambycast’s” journey to Iowa and the “media circus” around Hillary Clinton. “When the Clintons approached the media zoo for question time, Bill Clinton leaned in and relished the scene. Hillary kept her distance,” Hamby wrote in a blog post.

It’s ‘Al Roker Appreciation Day’ as ‘Today’ Weatherman Turns 60

RokerIt was a morning of well wishes for Al Roker on the weatherman’s 60th birthday.

“Today” celebrated throughout the morning. In one segment, Roker gave his six lessons learned in six decades: cherish family, focus on your health, develop hobbies, learn to laugh at yourself, don’t feel you need retire if you love what you do, and always keep learning new things (watch after the jump).

Topping off the morning, Roker was treated to some of his favorite barbeque dishes, a giant Marshmallow Man in The Plaza, on-air gifts from his children, a special happy birthday interview with Vice President Joe Biden, and a surprise declaration from a former rival. “He doesn’t look a day over 59,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio told Roker. He then proclaimed today “Al Roker Appreciation Day.”

WATCH:

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‘Reclaiming the Morning Television Crown is Nothing Short of a Mania Inside NBCUniversal’

GMA TodayVariety’s Brian Steinberg takes an inside look at the behind-the-scenes battle between first-place “Good Morning America” and second-place “Today.” Although reclaiming the top spot has become “nothing short of a mania inside NBCUniversal,” Steinberg writes the two shows are not as different as the talent and executives may say:

Just as Coke and Pepsi sell a similar fizzy brown liquid, so too are “GMA” and “Today” pouring from the same pot of coffee into different mugs. “GMA” can be equally as serious as “Today” in its first hour when news warrants. For every trip that “Today’s” Guthrie makes to interview Secretary of State Kerry, there is a sojourn by “GMA’s” Robach to Nigeria to explore the plight of captive schoolgirls. For every “GMA” report on two sisters who survive being knocked off their paddleboards and drifting out to sea, there is a “Today” interview with a young man who shed 550 pounds. “GMA” recently featured a contest among local firefighting squads; after Lauer was doused in ice water on a charity dare from golfer Greg Norman, “Today” dispatched Guthrie and Lauer to Howard Stern’s XM Satellite Radio show to get the shock jock to take Lauer’s challenge.

“I know we’re doing something right,” says “Today’s” Roker, “because two or three months later, we’ll see it on ‘GMA.’ We have our ‘Orange Room,’ and oh my gosh, look at that, they’ve got a ‘Social Square!’ ” One could argue that “GMA” began showing the entire on-air team on camera well before “Today” took a similar approach. Read more

‘Sharknado 2:’ Watch for Sharks, ‘Today’ Show Cameos, and also Sharks

RokerLauerSharknadoWe know your DVRs are probably already set for Wednesday night, but here’s what you should really look out when Syfy debuts “Sharknado 2:” lots of “Today” show cameos. As the Orlando Sentinel‘s Hal Boedeker looks at the increasingly blurry line between news and entertainment :

NBC’s “Today” gets a half dozen scenes in “Sharknado 2.” Purists may carp, with reason, that participating in such a cheesy movie diminishes the “Today” news brand. Matt Lauer and Al Roker pop in frequently to update viewers on the “sharknado” crisis sweeping New York City. Roker warns of “weather you’ve never seen before,” and Lauer adds, “All you can do is just shake your head.”

That storm even materializes on the “Today” anchor desk, and Lauer has to take matters into his own hands. It’s more gruesome than Ann Curry‘s exit.

Who’s That Guy Roaming the ‘Today’ Show Plaza?

Alex oneTwelve years ago, Alex Ficquette was a teenager shouting at the back of a “Today” show concert featuring Mary J. Blige.

“I randomly saw Al Roker buying a pretzel from a street vendor, and said ‘Hi’ to him,” Ficquette told TVNewser. Fast forward to today, where he’s been anointed “Alex on the plaza.”

The Associate Producer for the “Today” show oversees the signature outdoor plaza, interacting with fans who come from far and wide to experience the concerts, contests, and ideally, enjoy their 15 minutes — or just a few seconds — of fame with “Today’s” hosts.

Friday morning, TVNewser spent some time on the plaza as OneRepublic performed. All the while, Ficquette, 27, kept the crowd revved up as they waited for the pop-rock band to take the stage. Taking pictures, sparking conversations, and giving shout outs to the best signs is all part of being the plaza’s ringleader (Vine after the jump).

“That group outside, they’ve been up since 2:30am, and you would never know it,” he told us about one energetic group celebrating their friend’s 60th birthday. “You have to be interested in people’s stories. I feed off of their energy because they’re in amazing spirits.” When he’s not on the plaza he might appearing on the show’s fourth hour with Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford.

Ficquette’s path to the TV news business is a story in itself. “I didn’t go to school for film or production,” he said.

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The Sunday Ticker: Al, Jose, Maria Elena

  • The Weather Channel’s “Wake up with Al” celebrates its 5th birthday today. Last week, hosts Al Roker and Stephanie Abrams took a look back at the biggest storms, biggest guests and best remotes since the show launched July 20, 2009.

  • MSNBC and Telemundo anchor José Díaz-Balart will receive the Rubén Salazar Award for Communications at the NCLR annual convention in Los Angeles Tuesday. The organization presents the award to a professional dedicated to portraying news relevant to US Hispanics.

  • Univision News anchor María Elena Salinas travels to El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala, to get to the root of the current crisis at the U.S. border where more than 52,000 unaccompanied children have been detained. Her special report will air on Univision tonight at 7 pm ET/PT.

This Cable News Host Isn’t Headed to ‘The View’

Mika Brzezinski at Fortune Summit_304x200As speculation about who will replace Sherri Shepherd and Jenny McCarthy on “The View” grows, you can scratch at least one name off the list.

We’ve been hearing that MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski could potentially be headed to the ABC chat show, so we asked MSNBC. The network tells us there’s no truth to the rumor.

Meanwhile, Meredith Vieira, one of the original “The View” co-hosts was on NBC’s “Today” show giving her thoughts on last night’s firing of Shepherd and McCarthy. “It’s practically broken down the show, it’s just Whoopi [Goldberg] who’s left,” said Vieira.

Vieira said she’s heard rumors of former host Rosie O’Donnell returning as well as the potential for male hosts. Al Roker asked Vieira if she can make a call and get the inside scoop. “I don’t have enough to do, that I have to do your homework…I don’t work on the show anymore!” Vieira said (watch after the jump).

A couple hours later, Barbara Walters returned to “The View” to discuss her interview with the father of the Isla Vista shooter, which will air tonight in a “20/20″ special. The segment was pre-taped Wednesday, before Shepherd and McCarthy’s exits.

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NBC Invades Disney’s Backyard

fallonorlandoBoth the “Today” show and the “Tonight Show” are heading to Orlando this week as NBC’s corporate cousin Universal opens Diagon Alley, a new attraction at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Al Roker, Natalie Morales, Willie Geist and Tamron Hall will broadcast the third hour of “Today” from the park on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Jimmy Fallon is bringing “The Tonight Show” to Universal Orlando Resort for a week of shows. Several stars of the Harry Potter movies will guest on “Today,” while Jennifer Lopez, Jimmy Buffett, Rosario Dawson, and Pitbull are among the guests on “Tonight.” Fallon and announcer Steve Higgins also get in on the Miami Vice action for tonight’s opening credit sequence (above).

Universal opened its first Orlando theme park in 1990. NBC merged with Universal in 2004. Orlando is most famous for the theme parks operated by Disney, the first of which opened in 1971. Disney owns NBC rival ABC.

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