Today weekend show cast

Kathie Lee Gifford to Exit NBC’s ‘Today’ Next Year

NBC News chief Noah Oppenheim made the announcement Tueday morning in a memo to staff.

Kathie Lee Gifford will leave Today after more than 10 years co-hosting the fourth hour of the NBC morning show, the latest upheaval in a broader restructuring of the show following the cancellation of Megyn Kelly Today in late October.

NBC News chief Noah Oppenheim made the announcement Tuesday morning in a memo to staff, obtained by The Hollywood Reporter. “Kathie Lee is generously staying with us through the show’s next anniversary, April 7, 2019. We will have much more to share before then about our plans for that hour, which will, of course, continue to include Hoda ,” he said.

Oppenheim called Gifford a “legend,” pointing to her “enduring and endearing talents in morning television.”

Gifford began co-hosting the 10 a.m. hour of the Today show — known for its celebrity guests and lively, wine-filled conversations — with Kotb in 2008.

“In 2008, I joined the Today show family intending to spend one year,” Gifford said in a statement. “But something unexpected happened along the way: I fell in love with a beautiful, talented, extraordinary Egyptian goddess named Hoda, and an amazing group of individuals who work tirelessly and joyfully at their jobs, many of them starting at midnight, creating an unprecedented four hours of live television.”

She added: “I stayed year after year making a million memories with people I will never forget. I leave Today with a grateful heart but I’m truly excited for this new creative season in my life. Many thanks to all the wonderful people who made the years fly by.”

Gifford also addressed her impending exit on Tuesday’s episode of the Today show. “It’s an exciting time for me and I’m thrilled about all the projects that are coming up, but it’s also hard,” she said, fighting back tears. “The reason I stayed longer than a year is because I love everybody here so much. I’ve been in this business for 120 years and never worked with a more beautiful group of people who just give, give, give every day for four hours of live television every day, five days a week. We have fun and we laugh and we support one another. We know each other’s kids’ names, we know when someone is having a colonoscopy — we know everything! We do life together, and nobody more so than my Hoda.”

During her emotional announcement, Gifford discussed her potential successor on the show. “I have my idea of who might be absolutely wonderful, but there’s a great pool of talent and beauty and heart right around here, right within our own family,” she said. “And, if they come from outside the family, they will soon become family, because you all treat everybody that way.”

Gifford’s exit is not unexpected; she has a full plate that includes songwriting and performing. She also is an author, and missed several shows while on a book tour earlier this year for The Rock, The Road and The Rabbi, her memoir about faith.

The broader Today show franchise is also dealing with the expected departure of Kelly, who had her 9 a.m. show canceled following her controversial comments on blackface.

With Gifford’s departure, NBC News management will be retooling two hours of the venerable morning franchise. The 9 a.m. hour is still a work in progress. The show in January will move out of Studio 6A at 30 Rock, where it was filmed in front of a live audience, and will originate from the flagship Studio 1A. The move could save as much as $50 million annually in production costs. NBC executives have yet to name permanent anchors for the hour.

Before coming aboard Today, Gifford hosted Live With Regis and Kathie Lee with Regis Philbin for more than a decade. On Tuesday, Gifford compared her on-air split from Kotb to her relationship with Philbin. “When I left Regis it was hard, but I’m closer to him now than we were after 15 years together. You don’t share that kind of life together and not be changed forever by it.”

“The minute you stepped into my life with both feet, everything changed,” Kotb replied through tears, as her producers elevated a tissue box over their heads. “You chose me, and that’s how it started. Everything good that has happened in my life has happened since you came.”

Watch Gifford open up about her Today exit in the video, below.

Jeremy Barr and Marisa Guthrie contributed to this report.

She’s probably one of the only people who can drink alcohol on live TV at 10:00 a.m., but after 11 years of sipping white wine next to Hoda Kotb, Kathie Lee Gifford is bidding the “Today” show goodbye. Tributes for the popular host have been pouring in since December, when NBC announced she had decided to leave the program.

On Thursday’s show, Gifford and her partner-in-crime, Kotb, looked back on their years together. “She totally jumped into my life in a way that I had never experienced before,” Kotb said in a video montage of the hosts’ 11 years together. “She stepped into it, and I was transfixed by her … I don’t know if you’ve ever had that chemistry where you connect with someone like that. I had it, and it was a feeling I’d never had before — that kind of intensity.”

The fourth hour of “Today” has been filled with “cheers to Kathie Lee” all week. Actress Jane Krakowski surprised the hosts on set, singer Nicole C. Mullen serenaded them, and Kristen Chenoweth performed Gifford’s song, “Everyone Has a Story.” Several celebrity friends recorded laudatory messages. From Andy Cohen to Kourtney Kardashian, stars came out in force to show support for Gifford.

Our favorite celebrity friends sent lovely message for @kathielgifford! #CheersToKLG pic.twitter.com/IIeOJTLi6o

— Kathie Lee and Hoda (@klgandhoda) April 3, 2019

“You just make me so happy,” said comedian Ken Jeong, who has appeared as a guest and co-host on the show before.

“Kathie Lee, you’re an icon, you’re a legend, but most importantly to me, you’re my friend,” Maria Shriver said.

“I know we joke around a lot, but the truth is this: This is a sad day,” Craig Ferguson said. “You’re a great treasure to American broadcasting, and you will be sadly missed.” Gifford and Ferguson recently starred together in the movie “Then Came You.” Gifford also wrote the film.

When NBC announced Gifford would be leaving, network executives said it was because she wanted to focus on other projects. “As we all know, Kathie Lee’s plate has been overflowing lately with film, music and book projects, and after giving us eleven extraordinary years, she’s decided to focus her attention full-time on those other creative endeavors,” NBC News president Noah Oppenheim wrote in a memo.

The 65-year-old Gifford has had a long career in show business. She was the first woman to guest host the “Late Show with David Letterman,” according to her bio. She was a correspondent for ABC’s “Good Morning America,” and then stayed at the network to co-host “Live! With Regis and Kathie Lee.” She hosted the talk show alongside Regis Philbin for 15 years and recieved 11 Emmy nominations.

She has also acted in several TV shows and movies. Aside from her on-camera talent, Gifford has held roles behind the scenes as a writer and producer. She is also passionate about music and has written and starred in several musicals, and started her own record label, Lamb Records.

Kristen Wiig played a wine-chugging Kathie Lee on “Saturday Night Live,” playing off the fact that both hosts keep a glass of wine with them on set. Gifford turned her wine hobby into a career move when she created the company Gifft Wines in 2014.

The star also serves as a spokesperson Childhelp and is involved with several other charities, such as the Association to Benefit Children.

Over the past four decades on TV, Gifford has shared herself with the world. She opened up about the death of her husband, Frank Gifford, on “Today” in 2015. Gifford thanked Kotb for her support after the death of her mother in 2017. And she also celebrated when Kotb announced she had adopted a baby girl.

It’s not just Gifford’s “Today” co-hosts preparing to say goodbye on Friday; fans have been using the hashtag #cheerstoKLG to share messages of thanks. Many fans are posting videos and photos of themselves drinking wine and toasting to Gifford – the perfect way to send her off.

#CheersToKLG from friends Susan and Doreen. We love you and Hoda. You have made our mornings better. You make us laugh and cry. We share your faith and wish you the best on your journey ahead. “Let your light shine before men”💥😘@KathieLGifford @hodakotb @KoskoSusan pic.twitter.com/OgNQ6fti8K

— Doreen Slater (@doreen_slater) April 4, 2019

Everything Kathie Lee you are such an inspiration you live your faith everyday with no apologies unapologetically happy and free to live your best life you encourage me to be the same I can’t wait to see what God has in store for you #CHEERSTOKLG pic.twitter.com/SS7LCBpwjs

— Paula Fowler (@PaulaFo01350811) April 3, 2019

Jenna Bush Hager’s pregnancy means a bundle of change on ‘Today’ show

Jenna Bush Hager, the NBC anchor and daughter of President George W. Bush, announced she’s pregnant with her third child, a boy.

Congratulations are rolling in on social media for Hager, who just joined the Today show after Kathie Lee Gifford retired. Hager was officially named to the Today show fourth-hour anchor role in late February.

Hager will work alongside Hoda Kotb, but she’s got some news, too: Last week Kotb announced she adopted her second child. She’s taking some time off to spend with her new little bundle, Hope.

“I knew that Hoda wanted a baby more than anything in the world,” Hager says, tearing up about when she told Kotb the news she is pregnant. Hager says Kotb “wept out of happiness” for her friend and co-anchor.

On Monday, the 10 a.m. hour of the Today show featured Hager and Meredith Vieira. While Vieira had a glass of white wine in front of her, producers put a glass of pickles in front of Hager.

She’s 5 and a half months pregnant and revealed on live TV that she’s having a baby boy.

“It’s the first boy grandchild on both sides,” she said on the show.

Vieira will be on Today with Hoda & Jenna all week, they announced. It remains to be seen who will continue to fill in for Kotb — and then Hager — on their maternity leaves.

One of the reasons Hager announced her pregnancy the day after Easter was because her daughters. 6-year-old Mila and 3-year-old Poppy. learned the news the day prior — and Hager says they couldn’t keep the secret.

“They told the man behind me on the airplane, they told the people at church,” Hager says, laughing.

It was time to tell, anyhow, she says: “Y’all, I’m very pregnant. So I don’t know how I hid this.”

Even some of Hager’s Today co-anchors, like Craig Melvin, seemed surprised. Fellow mom Savannah Guthrie admitted she knew.

“It is a shock, it’s a lot,” Hager said on the Today show. “But we are grateful.”

NBC has seen a flurry of change in anchors over the past few years. Beyond the Hager-Gifford swap, Today anchors who have left the NBC morning show over the past few years include: Matt Lauer (fired after sexual misconduct accusation in 2017; Kotb became his replacement); Tamron Hall (show canceled in 2017; Megyn Kelly Today show replaced it); Megyn Kelly (show canceled in 2018 following blackface comment).

So happy for this girl behind me! @JennaBushHager @TODAYshow pic.twitter.com/7zo1d0xBdv

— Meredith Land (@MeredithNBC5) April 22, 2019

I’ve been having the best time shooting makeovers for the Today Show these past few weeks, but secretly, the highlight thus far has been catching a glimpse inside Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb’s closets in their Today Show dressing rooms. Shamelessly, I asked both ladies if they’d let me give you guys an peek too and thankfully, they said yes! Check ’em out!

Dressing for television is far from easy, and I would say, at least 50% of the time you think you look good and then, are greatly disappointed when you watch it on screen (at least in my case!)

So what do you do when you have to look amazing twice a day on TV? They’ve got it down to a science: great dresses in brights, prints, and even white (which I have to admit, I thought was a TV no-no). And, being super organized doesn’t hurt either (see below for their tricks).

Kathy Lee is a huge Kay Unger, Donald Deal, and David Meister fan while Hoda loves all things DVF.

Hoda’s Closet: Prints, prints, and more prints!

I’m stealing this idea…it’s the perfect hosiery storage solution!

Kathie Lee’s Closet suggests another organization idea: Hang necklaces from safety pins so they don’t get tangled!

And here’s Kathie Lee, displaying one of her new faves

Here are some of my TV-worthy dress picks:

What is your closet filled with? Is it filled with prints like Hoda’s? Or more solids like Kathie Lee’s?

I’ll be back at it with Kathie Lee and Hoda tomorrow morning at 10:14, for another Glamour-approved makeover! Don’t miss it!

Doing better than ever! Former Today show host Kathie Lee Gifford made her return to her old stomping grounds on Tuesday, November 12, to discuss her new life in Nashville. “Everybody asks me, like, ‘How is Kathie doing?’ I go, ‘You don’t understand. Kathie Lee is happier now than I remember her being,’” Hoda Kotb began. “Then I have been in years and years and years,” the 66-year-old blonde beauty divulged.

“First of all, there is a different culture — completely different culture down there, and it’s a culture of kindness in Nashville,” Kathie Lee added. “And they are authentically kind. There are some mean ones, I guess, but I don’t hang out with them. They are joyful, they have so much fun. Music everywhere. There are barbecues. Everything is Americana, like when I was growing up — like you did in Texas,” she said, referring to Jenna Bush Hager’s hometown state.

The former talk show host continued to give insight into her life down south. “I wake up, and there are church bells ringing all around me and birds. When a siren comes by, rarely, it’s not because someone was murdered, it’s because somebody needs help,” she said. “It’s all different every day. I didn’t realize it’s seven months since I was here.”

Courtesy of Kathie Lee Gifford/Instagram

Of course, Hoda, 55, and Jenna, 37, wanted to know if she had been interested in dating again following the death of her husband, Frank Gifford. “I went out on a couple of dates,” she admitted. “I went out, you know, with friends to a club. This sweet guy asked me to dance, and I said, ‘OK.’ And then he disappeared into the crowd. A couple of weeks later, same band, and so we danced again. We just went out a couple of times, it was fun. I hadn’t been on a date in 33 years.”

The songwriter detailed what it was like to dip back into the dating pool since she was off the market for quite a long time. “It’s surreal,” she said. “Because the world has changed so much, but he is a gentleman, so it was fine. It was fun, but then I got so busy, and we are from different worlds. Down there, I don’t stay at home. Nobody in Greenwich, Connecticut, just shows up for one thing. They just drop by.”

Fans couldn’t help but comment on Kathie’s appearance. One person wrote, “She looks so much healthier and stress-free,” while another echoed, “I’m so happy for KLG.” A third person chimed in, writing, “Kathie, you look fab!”

Charles Sykes/Invision/AP/

However, Kathie Lee admitted she enjoyed being back on the NBC show. We love seeing Kathie thriving these days!

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Both the Saturday and Sunday editions of Today are referred to as Weekend Today. The show first aired in 1987, and it has aired episodes continuously up to today, making it one of the best morning shows. The broadcasting out of Studio 1A in NBC Studios in New York. Over such a long show run, plenty of hosts have come and gone. Some stayed on the show for decades while others came and went very quickly. On this list, you will see all of the Weekend Today anchors and have the chance to vote for the ones you looked forward to seeing in the morning.

When the show first aired on September 20th, 1987, Boyd Matson and Maria Shriver were the hosts. Garrick Utley took the reigns as the news anchor. Today, the show is led by Sheinelle Jones, Peter Alexander, and Dylan Dreyer on Saturday while Willie Geist and Dylan Dreyer take over on Sunday. Plenty of other anchors have hosted in between with many going on to have incredibly successful careers in journalism.

The anchors on Weekend Today have the important duty of keeping viewers informed about current events on their days off. It’s many people’s favorite way to stay informed. Which of these anchors did you enjoy watching the most?

Photo: Today/NBC

Sheinelle Jones is departing NBC’s Weekend Today.

We hear Jones wants to spent more time with her husband and 3 young children on the weekends. She’ll remain a co-host of the 9 a.m. hour of Today, Mondays – Fridays.

Six days of on-air work can be intense, particularly in the mornings!

No replacement for Jones has been named at this time, but there will be a rotating cast of anchors and correspondents joining Weekend Today co-anchor Peter Alexander on the Saturday morning program.

Prior to joining NBC News and Today back in Oct. 2014, Jones was a journalist for WTXF, Fox’s Philadelphia affiliate. She was host of Good Day Philadelphia for 9 years, reporting local, national and international headlines for the Fox station’s morning show.

Jones isn’t the only Saturday Today host leaving the show. Weekend Today weather anchor Dylan Dreyer is heading out on maternity leave, but she’ll be co-hosting the 9 a.m. hour on weekdays for a few more weeks.

“It has been an incredible five plus years, but for the past year, I’ve been working Monday through Friday co-hosting the @3rdHourTODAY, while also anchoring #WeekendTODAY … As much as I love my Saturday TODAY family, this is going to be my last day anchoring the show.” pic.twitter.com/fFuhb2zOeY

— TODAY (@TODAYshow) December 21, 2019

Karl Stefanovic to return as face of Today with Allison Langdon in 2020

Stefanovic will be parachuted in to resurrect the ailing breakfast show less than one year after he was dumped while on honeymoon after his wedding to Jasmine Yarbrough in Mexico.

Stefanovic will be joined by Weekend Today host and 60 Minutes reporter Allison Langdon, who will co-host the show.

Stefanovic confirmed the news in an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald published today, saying: “I am as shocked about this as everyone else.”

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Stefanovic told the outlet he didn’t think he’d be given the opportunity to host Today again.

“I thought my time was up, but then, when I was sounded out about it, it got me thinking,” he said, calling it a “big job with enormous pressures”… “but also without question the best live TV job in Australia.”

Stefanovic also said this year’s Today team had gone through “an extremely difficult time dealing with outside forces”.

Wake up with TODAY and Karl and Allison in 2020!

Posted by Channel 9 on Friday, 8 November 2019

GEORGIE ‘DISAPPOINTED’ BY AXING

The current team including Georgie Gardner, Deb Knight and Tom Steinfort will be replaced, with Gardner reportedly returning to Nine News and Steinfort to 60 Minutes.

In a seperate statement to the Sydney Morning Herald, Gardner said she was consulted two weeks ago about Today’s direction next year — “and naturally I’m disappointed with the outcome.” She also took a swipe at the “disproportionate” and “cruel” public scrutiny she faced as host this year.

Karl Stefanovic went to work on This Time Next Year. Picture: Paul A. Broben.Source:Supplied

Nine’s big Karl backflip comes after the network had been under pressure to revamp Today due to record low ratings and on air tension among hosts. This month, the show registered its lowest weekly average of 174,000.

Stefanovic’s new pay packet in the role is unclear, however it is reportedly a $2 million plus salary.

“It is crunch time,” a well-placed TV executive told The Daily Telegraph. “It just had to be done. Today is bleeding ratings and, worst still, the show is bleeding revenue.”

The new look panel including Tom Steinfort, Deb Knight and Georgie Gardner never got off the ground with viewers.Source:News Corp Australia

Stefanovic was sensationally dropped from the show in December last year while on honeymoon in the US.

“Nine and Karl Stefanovic have agreed it is time for him to step off the Today show,” a statement from news director Darren Wick read at the time.

“Karl remains on contract with the network and will continue to host (his other show) This Time Next Year.”

It came after a high-profile dispute over pay parity that led co-host Lisa Wilkinson to defect to The Project on Ten.

Karl and Lisa in their hey day were a ratings hit. Picture: InstagramSource:Supplied

Allison Langdon will take up the mantle on the show.Source:Supplied

Stefanovic also underwent a high-profile marriage breakdown and new relationship with shoe-designer, Jasmine Yarbrough.

At the time, the Today host said the past year had been “tough”.

“Thanks to our viewers mostly, you are what matters most,” Stefanovic said.

“It’s been a tough time. Thanks for hanging in there. I look forward to seeing you in another capacity at this great network soon.”

Meanwhile Today Extra host Sonia Kruger is expected to move to Channel 7 next year.

KARL’S CHEEKY QUIP

Last month, Stefanovic addressed the growing speculation that he was set to make a return to breakfast television, and confessed he was eager to return to Today.

Karl was one of the celebrities who took part in Fitzy and Wippa’s backyard cricket game at Kirribilli House on October 31.

“When I messaged Karl to say thanks for being part of the team, he wrote back: ‘Haven’t lost one mate’,” Wippa said on Nova.

“So mate, you’re the lucky charm?”

Stefanovic joked: “Well, that’s what I keep trying to tell Channel 9, that I’m the lucky charm. If they want to pad me up and send me in I’m ready to go in and we’ll have a win.”

A ROUGH YEAR

Today’s new-look line-up debuting in January.Source:Channel 9

Karl’s quip came at the tail end of a tough year for Nine’s flagship morning show, which started in 2019 with a new line-up but quickly slumped to “record low” ratings.

By this month, ratings had plumetted even lower: Just 155,000 people tuned in on Friday November 1.

The ratings slump came after a tumultuous period that began when Lisa Wilkinson jumped ship to Channel 10’s The Project and ended when long-time host Karl Stefanovic walked out the doors late last year.

His brother Peter left the network and in a major overhaul of Today, presenters Sylvia Jeffreys and Richard Wilkins were shuffled into new roles.

Knight replaced Stefanovic as co-host in January, with Brooke Boney joining the team as entertainment reporter and Tom Steinfort as newsreader.

Speaking to the Sydney Morning Heraldin October, Sunrise executive producer Michael Pell said he’d been “puzzled” by his rival program’s decision to so dramatically change their line-up.

“I think they made some very strange decisions at the start of the year,” he told the outlet.

“I felt really bad for a lot of the people who were cast aside, some for absolutely no reason. A really good newsreader in Sylvia (Jeffreys), a really good sports reader in Tim . They were cast aside and viewers punished them for that.”

After a bumpy start to the year, new co-hosts Gardner and Knight even read out mean tweets about the show live on air, including one particularly unnecessary one that said the pair looked like “a pair of scruffy, unkempt blondes (that have) just climbed out of bed and hadn’t even brushed their hair”.