Natalie Morales Exits ‘Access Hollywood’ After 3 Years: ‘I’m Just a Few Studio Gates Over’


There’s a shift happening at Access Hollywood and Access Live. After three years as a cohost, Natalie Morales will be exiting the daily entertainment news series, Us Weekly can confirm. For months, rumors have been swirling that Morales was let go from the news program; however,  NBC denied them repeatedly.

Morales, 46, has been part of the NBC for two decades, first starting on a local network in Connecticut, then moving to MSNBC, and in 2006, joining the Today show as a national correspondent. In 2008, she became a co-anchor on the show; three years later, she replaced Ann Curry. Then, in 2016, she made the move to Los Angeles to join Access Hollywood.

The mother of two will continue to work for Today as the West Coast anchor and will stay on as a correspondent for Dateline. Kit Hoover will continue as the anchor of Access Hollywood while Scott Evans will continue to join for Access Live. Variety was the first to break the news.

Natalie Morales Fired Access Hollywood
Natalie Morales Nathan Congleton/NBC

Earlier this month, Morales celebrated 20 years working at NBC. When the Today show said goodbye to Kathie Lee Gifford, Savannah Guthrie also sent a message to Morales, congratulating her on the milestone and applauding her “intelligence, grace and goodness.”

During Friday’s Live, Evans confirmed the news while sitting next to Morales and drinking white wine.

“Nat, for the last three years you have done incredible, incredible things,” the 32-year-old World of Dance host told his cohost. They then cut to a video sent in by Hoover, who was on vacation. While driving a golf cart, the former Road Rules star, 48, recounted some of her favorite memories and said, “I love you so much. Our journey does not end here. It’s only beginning!”

Morales, getting a bit choked up, blew a kiss to the camera, and said, “It does not end, that’s for sure!”

Read Morales’ memo sent to staff on Friday:

To my dear Access family,

And I do mean family! I have had a wonderful 3 years here with you and will treasure the memories and good times! Thank you for welcoming me with open arms and for always bringing your A-game. I have so much to be grateful for and can’t name all of you… but I do have to especially thank Kit, Scott, Sibley and Liliana for making it always a fun day “at work.” And thanks to our incredible producers, crew, assistants, wardrobe, hair and makeup teams.. I mean truly, I have a long list and hope to thank you each personally. Keep being the little engine that could!

As an “Air Force” brat who has had to say goodbye one too many times in my life.. I prefer to say see you all later … and by later I mean on the next red carpet or on the lot! I’m just a few studio gates away after all. Please stay in touch!

All my best,

Natalie

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