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Posts Tagged ‘Willie Geist’

‘Today’ Ticker: Top Job, Iced Out, Snowed In

  • Al Roker took on Georgia officials for being ill-prepared for Tuesday’s storm. “They took a gamble. They didn’t want to pre-treat the roads. I don’t think they wanted to spend the money,” said Roker. “This was poor planning on the mayor’s part and on the governor’s part.”

How the 3rd and 4th Hours of ‘Today’ are Doing

TodayThirdHourWhile the first two hours of NBC’s “Today” remain in second place in the mornings, the show’s third and fourth hours are seeing some of the best numbers in years.

The third hour, now called “Today’s Take” and co-hosted by Al Roker, Natalie Morales and Willie Geist, finished 2013 with its best fourth quarter in total viewers since 2006, averaging more than 3.6 million viewers.

The fourth hour, hosted by Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford, had its best-ever total viewer audience for a fourth quarter averaging 2.3 million viewers. There’s also a 2am encore, apparently popular with college students, that draws an additional 700,000 viewers (there’s likely a drinking game involved).

The third hour of “Today” has been around since 1999 when it was called “Later Today.” In 2000, it became an extension of the then-No.1 morning show. Fourth hour hosts Kotb and Gifford are approaching 6 years together.

Every autumn, many local stations replace their post-network morning newscasts — whether it be “Live with Kelly & Michael,” “The Queen Latifah Show,” “Dr. Phil” or “Judge Judy” — making the later hours of “Today” a consistent place to turn in the mid-mornings.

Will Tamron Hall Stay with NBC?

Tamron Hall 304It’s contract time for MSNBC anchor Tamron Hall, who also fills in on “Today.” TVGuide reports Hall is negotiating for a co-host role on the third hour of “Today,” currently hosted by Willie Geist, Natalie Morales, and Al Roker.

As we’ve noted before, CNN Worldwide President Jeff Zucker is fond of Hall. Zucker’s had success to date prying prominent talent away from other networks, Chris Cuomo and Bill Weir to name two.

We’ve heard even if Hall stays and moves to “Today,” she would likely still host a show for MSNBC. She currently anchors “News Nation” at 2pm.

With 11am and noon hosts Thomas Roberts and Alex Wagner on the move, MSNBC has been having Richard Lui and Craig Melvin fill in on those hours with news coverage this week.

NBC News and MSNBC declined comment to TVNewser. We’ve also reached out to Hall’s agent, but have not heard back.

Willie Geist and Bradley Cooper’s Laughing Fit

Ahead of the Golden Globes Sunday, Bradley Cooper and “Today” co-host Willie Geist had themselves a giggling fit.

“Richie DiMaso was a character you were really excited…….” Geist said in an interview with Cooper this morning, struggling through laughter to finish his question.

“Just barrel through bro,” Cooper said while laughing uncontrollably.

Cooper, who is nominated for best supporting actor for his role in “American Hustle,” did eventually manage to describe his experience starting work on the movie just a day after last year’s Academy Awards.

The full Geist/Cooper interview airs tonight on NBC’s Golden Globes special, “Going for Gold,” at 8pmET.

It’s Official: Thomas Roberts Named Host of MSNBC’s ‘Way Too Early’

thomas robertsThomas Roberts has officially been named host of MSNBC’s “Way Too Early.” He will begin in his new role on January 13, MSNBC president Phil Griffin announced this morning.

“Thomas’ unique personality and point of view are just the right mix to lead-in to ‘Morning Joe.’ Thomas has really found his voice in the past year and joining the ‘Morning Joe’ table gives him the opportunity to further develop it,” Griffin said in a statement.

Roberts takes over for Brian Shactman, who has been hosting the early-morning show since Willie Geist was named co-anchor of the 9 a.m. hour of “Today.”

The Daily Caller reported yesterday that Roberts’ move to the morning shift was an attempt to make MSNBC’s early-morning hours more “diverse.”

“Mika and I worked with Thomas in Oklahoma City after last spring’s tornado and became fans,” Joe Scarborough said in a statement provided to TVNewser. “Despite internet speculation, he was chosen based strictly on merit and not politically correct considerations.”

Read the full release from MSNBC after the jump. Read more

Report: Thomas Roberts Tapped to Host ‘Way Too Early’ on MSNBC

Thomas Roberts_smallMSNBC’s Thomas Roberts will be waking up earlier, tapped to host  “Way Too Early” at 5:30am, The Daily Caller reports.

Roberts, who also hosts MSNBC Live at 11amET, replaces Brian Shactman. Shactman replaced Willie Geist upon his move to “Today.”

The Daily Caller’s reports the openly-gay Roberts’ move to “Way Too Early” is MSNBC’s attempt to make the show seem more “diverse.”

This is MSNBC’s second shuffle in recent weeks, after naming Alex Wagner the replacement at 4pm for Martin Bashir. Ronan Farrow is also set to debut this month in a yet-unknown timeslot.

An MSNBC spokesperson did not respond to our request for comment on Thursday.

‘Today’ Stumbles Through ‘Jingle Bells’

Mumbling, bumbling, and failed singing of “Jingle Bells” make up the “Today” holiday blooper reel.

“Dashing through the snow,” Matt Lauer started.

“On a one-horse open sleigh,” Savannah Guthrie sang next, immediately realizing her mistake.

“In… it’s a classic!,” Lauer jokingly corrected her. “You don’t start changing the words of a classic.”

Add in Kathie Lee Gifford‘s “Santa smells” mix-up, Al Roker and actor Justin Long‘s quasi-miming effort, and Willie Geist‘s frustration getting the best of him for one memorable holiday song:

The Ticker: Grace, Slime, Willie

  • HLN’s Nancy Grace has signed a deal to stay with the network through 2017. Grace tells the NYPost that CNN chief Jeff Zucker approached her in July about a contract extension.

  • ABC News lawyers have asked a South Dakota circuit court judge to dismiss a $1.2 billion defamation lawsuit over a 2012 “World News’” story on beef byproduct “pink slime.”

  • The “Today” show’s Willie Geist hosts “What We Wasted Our Year On,” Fri., Dec. 27 at 9pmET on NBC. The comedy special is produced by NBC News’ Peacock Productions.

Today’s ‘Bitchy’ Selfie Moment

TodaySelfie

During a conversation about the appropriateness of the smiling “selfie” taken by Denmark’s Prime Minister with President Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron at Nelson Mandela‘s memorial, Natalie Morales defended First Lady Michelle Obama‘s “resting face” outside of the picture.

“How many of us have photos taken of us…you just have that bitchy resting face, as we say,” Morales giggled.

“With all due respect to the First Lady,” a surprised Willie Geist interjected.

WATCH: Read more

If Matt Lauer Leaves ‘Today,’ Who Will Succeed Him?

matt-lauer“Today” is actively building its bench of male hosts in the event Matt Lauer leaves the show at the conclusion of his contract in 2015, according to The Hollywood Reporter’s Marisa Guthrie.

Guthrie’s piece reports on the current NBC personalities—and potential outsiders—who might replace the long tenured anchor if he exits.

Which member of the NBC family could possibly fill Lauer’s shoes? Both Willie Geist, who is the co-host of “Today’s” 9amET hour, and “Meet The Press” moderator David Gregorycould be in the running. Both of their Q scores, which measures audience likability toward on-air personalities, are higher than Lauer’s, with Gregory’s standing out highest among the key adult women demo at 18 compared to Geist’s 14.

Other contenders mentioned in the piece—albeit long shots—are Ryan Seacrest and “Today” digital host Carson Daly, with the latter having  ”the weakest emotional connection” to female viewers, according to a Q  score executive.

Outside the streets of Rockefeller Plaza, Anderson Cooper is also mentioned as a possibility, but unlikely since he is negotiating a new deal with CNN while also continuing to contribute to “60 Minutes.”

Read more

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