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Posts Tagged ‘Josh Elliott’

Deborah Turness to Work with ‘Today’ Team Until GM Slot is Filled

nbc-news-senior-leadership-team

Back in January, NBC News president Deborah Turness sent out this org chart of her senior leadership team. There was a slot to fill: SVP and GM of the “Today” show. Today, that position is open again.

Jamie Horowitz, hired for the job back in May, didn’t make it to his first official day with NBC — Dec. 1. As TVNewser first reported, Horowitz was fired late Monday.

This morning, insiders tell us Matt Lauer was among those who’d lost faith in his leadership, but that any goodwill Horowitz had earned from Turness and her boss, Pat Fili-Krushel, who both recruited Horowitz from ESPN earlier this year, had run out.

Horowitz had been making the rounds at the show since September.  “He’s a really smart guy, and he’s been great at reaching out to us, getting our input, and so far we’re really impressed,” co-host Willie Geist told TVNewser two weeks ago.

It was in those meetings, from top talent, to the production assistants, that a profile began to emerge of an executive who would pit staffers against one another; a game of ‘Survivor,’ the Daily News called it, with people’s livelihoods at stake. “He was creating drama that wasn’t there,” an insider says.

Geist, who knows Horowitz personally, was among those angered by his antics. (Geist’s sister Libby worked with Horowitz at ESPN and is married to his former producing partner Kevin Wildes.)

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Natalie Morales and Willie Geist On the ‘Today’ Show’s New Family Members

Morales and Geist in Chicago on Saturday. Photo: Alissa Krinsky

Morales and Geist in Chicago on Saturday. Photo: Alissa Krinsky

Fresh out of their costumes as Saturday Night Live’Mary Katherine Gallagher and Spartan cheerleader Craig, “Today” show co-anchors Natalie Morales and Willie Geist told TVNewser they are delighted with the show’s well-received Halloween 2014 Boo-Nanza on Friday.

“We all get along so well,” Morales says about her on-air colleagues, citing the ”camaraderie” she felt as they portrayed famous SNL characters in a collection of skits.

It’s a far cry from the discord and tension at “Today” in 2012, when Ann Curry‘s exit from the show triggered an onslaught of negative publicity.

Since then, Savannah Guthrie – back from maternity leave this morning — was named co-anchor. Geist officially joined the “Today” family as well.

“I think you read things and you hear things about what TV shows are like behind the scenes – you know it’s cutthroat, and all that,” Geist told TVNewser, during an interview in Chicago Saturday ahead of “Skyscraper Live,” which Geist and Morales hosted last night.

“I was so impressed by how it was unlike anything I’d read the show was, and how good everyone is to each other and how well they get along.”

As the show continues to move forward, other new faces are on the scene as well.

Former ABC morning show competitor Josh Elliott made his first on-set appearance on “Today” last week, filling in for Morales as news anchor.  Read more

Willie Geist, Natalie Morales, Jim Cantore Hit the Windy City for Wallenda Skyscraper Walk

Discovery ChannelIt’s being billed as the most dangerous tightrope walk in the history of the Wallenda family: tonight in the Windy City, Nik Wallenda is set to cross the Chicago River while more than 50 stories high above the water, with no tether and no net.

For an encore, he’s then to do a second, shorter wire walk, between the two famed Marina Tower buildings located nearby. And this time, he’ll be blindfolded.

Not a feat for the faint of heart.

“Nik is probably the coolest, most calm guy when it comes to these things, as you would want him to be,” says Natalie Morales. who, with Today colleague Willie Geist, will co-anchor Discovery Channel’s coverage of the high-intensity event, which is being produced by NBC’s Peacock Productions.  ”I think we feel more of a comfort level, knowing how well he trains for the unforeseen circumstance.”

“I think we’re so confident in Nik because he’s so confident in himself,” adds Geist. “He does things he knows he’s capable of doing.”

TVNewser caught up with Morales and Geist in Chicago as the two prepped for today’s broadcast.  It will be the second time the pair will anchor such coverage, having teamed up last year with The Weather Channel’s Jim Cantore for Wallenda’s Grand Canyon walk.

Cantore is part of tonight’s event as well, providing updated forecasts during the show. He told TVNewser in Chicago that while the weather will be blustery - temperatures in the low-to-mid 40′s, with winds between 15-20 mph – that’s his forecast for those of us on the ground.  For Wallenda, “the winds can be a little bit stronger up there.”

Should the gusts be too great during his walk, Wallenda has said that his backup plan is to hold on to the wire and wait for help to arrive.

It will be a dangerous endeavor. Peacock Productions President and General Manager Sharon Scott confirms with TVNewser that there will be a 10-second delay during the broadcast, and Morales and Geist say they’re prepared should something go awry.

“Rest assured, there is a plan,” says Geist. ”But we don’t plan on using it.”

Another strategic consideration for the anchors is how to handle their direct communication with Wallenda. The three will be able to talk with each other during the second, shorter walk – the one that will have Wallenda blindfolded. Read more

Josh Elliott Fills in on ‘Today’ Show

Josh Elliott Today 304Now that his non-compete with ABC News is up, Josh Elliott is making his first on-set appearance on NBC’s “Today” show this week.  ”Josh Elliott is in for Natalie this morning. We’re happy about that,” Matt Lauer said on Tuesday’s show. Elliott was back this morning for what will be a two-day stint, insiders tells us.

Elliott made his first appearance on the show last month, teeing up NBC’s NFL coverage.

After helping “GMA” overtake long-dominant “Today” in the ratings in 2012, Elliott left the network in March for a role with NBC Sports and NBC Olympics.

The Morning Ticker: Morgan & the Mail, CNBC & China, Elliott & Cho

  • Former CNN host Piers Morgan is joining MailOnline as editor-at-large. Morgan will write several times a week, while pursing new TV ventures in the U.S. He is a former editor of British tabloids The News of the World and the Daily Mirror.

  • CNBC appears to be the latest western network to be blacked out in China as pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong continue. CNBC news assistant Seamus Conwell Vined the moment when a CNBC international channel went dark this morning.

  • NBC Sports’ Josh Elliott and WABC anchor Liz Cho are engaged. TVNewser spotted the happy couple at an event in Manhattan last night just as the news was breaking in Page Six.

Josh Elliott Makes ‘Today’ Debut

ElliottOver five months after he left ABC News for NBC Sports, Josh Elliott made his first appearance on “Today” yesterday.

“Welcome to the ‘Today’ show,” Matt Lauer said, introducing Elliott for his first segment. Elliott reported live from CenturyLink Field in Seattle to preview the NFL season ahead of the opener between the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers. That contest turned into a 20-point home-team blowout.

And this morning, Elliott reported from Mile High Stadium in Denver, Colorado, interviewing a local high school football coach about his team’s community service during training camp. He also spoke to former NFL great Terrell Davis .

WATCH:

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Olympics Extended on NBC Through 2032

CostasOlympicsNBCUniversal has just acquired all media rights to another six Olympics. NBC adds to the three Olympics it secured in an earlier deal: 2016 in Rio, 2018 in Peyongchang and 2020 in Tokyo, with six more Summer and Winter Olympics through 2032, the host cities of which have not yet been selected.

The new deal, valued at $7.65 billion, is the longest U.S. Olympic sports rights agreement in history.

“This is one of the most important days in the history of NBCUniversal,” says NBCU CEO Steve Burke. “The Olympics are part of the fabric of our company, and we couldn’t be more excited that today’s announcement guarantees that this massively popular and profitable programming will continue to air every two years on the broadcast, cable, digital and mobile platforms of NBCUniversal for the next two decades.”

NBC has had the U.S. rights to 11 of the last 14 Olympics. Josh Elliott, said the Olympics played a major part in his decision to leave ABC News for NBC Sports: “A profound and essential part of my being has always been to be a part of an Olympics broadcast,” Elliott said on the day he was hired.

Josh Elliott on ‘GMA’ Departure: 99 Percent of Rumors Were ‘Whole Cloth Fiction’

abc_josh_elliott_304On the same weekend he made his NBC Sports debut at the Kentucky Derby, former “Good Morning America” news anchor Josh Elliott poured cold water on the flurry of rumors born after his “GMA” departure.

“It was interesting for me to see this very deeply personal choice of mine become almost this bit player in this grander melodrama…99 percent of which just was whole cloth fiction,” Elliott told Extra’s Charissa Thompson. “I don’t know that we have enough time to work through them all,” Elliott answered regarding which headlines about his departure were false. He also vowed not to be after a new colleague’s anchor chair.

“None of that’s going to happen,” Elliott said on replacing Matt Lauer. “Unless the ‘Today’ show comes under the aegis of NBC Sports.”

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Josh Elliott Makes NBC Debut, with Former ABC Colleague

ElliottChampionFormer “Good Morning America” hosts Josh Elliott and Sam Champion were back together again this morning on the Weather Channel. Around 9:10amET Elliott turned up on Champion’s show “AMHQ.” Both are at Churchill Downs for NBC’s coverage of the Kentucky Derby. This is Elliott’s first day on-air for NBC. He joined the network a month ago today. The Weather Channel is part-owned by NBC. Elliott will be covering today’s Kentucky Oaks on NBC Sports Network as well the Derby tomorrow.

When Copy and Paste Tweeting Goes Wrong

“Good Morning America’s” revolving door has made headlines over the last few months, and this morning, its Twitter account momentarily forgot about one of its most recent staffing changes.

GMA tweet

The tweet, posted around 6:45am, has since been deleted. A network spokesperson tells us it was a simple mistake; its social media team mistakenly pulled an old tweet and published it.

Josh Elliott, of course, left “GMA” for NBC Sports last month; he debuts for the network on May 3 during the Kentucky Derby.

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