On Wednesday, NBC announced in shocking fashion while opening the “Today” show that its longtime host Matt Lauer had been fired due to “inappropriate sexual behaviour in the workplace.”
This is the latest bombshell revelation of a powerful man in entertainment who has been taken down due to sexual misconduct allegations.
Though it’s too soon to tell what the ramifications will be for “Today” in the battle for morning ratings, it’s clear NBC has lost one of its major players. That’s evident by how much the company was paying him.
Lauer, who has been a host on “Today” for 20 years, was earning $US25 million a year, according to Variety.
The trade compiled the biggest estimated annual salaries of reality, news, and talk show hosts over the summer, and Lauer is in the top three on the list, which also includes the likes of Megyn Kelly, Ryan Seacrest, and Ellen DeGeneres.
Here are the top 20 paid hosts:
Note: Some of these figures below include fees for producing and back-end compensation.
Mike Myers (“The Gong Show”) – $US3 million
Jamie Foxx (“Beat Shazam”) – $ 3 million
Alec Baldwin (“Match Game”) – $US3 million
Ryan Seacrest (“American Idol”) – $US12 million
Conan O’Brien (“Conan”) – $US12 million
David Letterman (Untitled Netflix Interview Show) – $US12 million
Anderson Cooper (CNN) – $US12 million
George Stephanopoulos (ABC News) – $US15 million
Ryan Seacrest (“Live with Kelly & Ryan”) – $US15 million
Pat Sajak (“Wheel of Fortune”) – $US15 million
Jimmy Kimmel (“Jimmy Kimmel Live!”) – $US15 million
Stephen Colbert (“The Late Show”) – $US15 million
Jimmy Fallon (“The Tonight Show”) – $US16 million
Robin Roberts (“Good Morning America”) – $US18 million
Megyn Kelly (NBC News) – $US18 million
Kelly Ripa (“Live with Kelly & Ryan”) – $US22 million
Katy Perry (“American Idol”) – $US25 million
Matt Lauer (“Today”) – $US25 million
Judith Sheindlin (“Judge Judy”) – $US47 million
Ellen DeGeneres (“The Ellen DeGeneres Show”) – $US50 million
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