Who's going to be left in the anchor seat on The Today Show?
After over 13 years as co-anchor, Matt Lauer plans to resign from NBC's hit morning program when his contract expires on Dec. 31, 2012, an insider tells Entertainment Tonight. Lauer, 53, debuted as an occasional news reader on the show in 1992, rising to the co-anchor chair in 1997 after the departure of Bryant Gumbel.
The timing couldn't be more interesting: His current co-anchor Meredith Vieira is also reportedly plotting her own departure for this September, TV Guide reported early Wednesday. (Despite discussions to extend her deal, Vieira is said to have grown tired of the show's demanding early morning production schedule.)
Plus, Lauer's old Today Show cohort, Katie Couric, is also said to be prepping to split from her gig with the CBS Evening News later this spring. (Couric, 54, left The Today Show in 2006 after 14 years as co-anchor.)
Rumors abound that Lauer and Couric may team up again with Jeff Zucker, the former Today Show executive producer.
CBS, plus NBC, remain mum on the rumors. Says a Today Show rep: "The Today Show anchors are currently under contract and firmly in place."