Josh Elliott, Lara Spencer to Anchor 'Good Afternoon America'
UPDATED: The previously announced third hour of the ABC morning staple, premiering in July, also will feature appearances from the show's full stable of on-air talent.
ABC News is firming up plans for this summer's experimental third hour of Good Morning America.
Good Afternoon America, which kicks off July 9 in the 2 p.m. ET time slot of the now-canceled Revolution, will feature current GMA talent Josh Elliott and Lara Spencer as anchors. The nine-week run of Good Afternoon America also will include special appearances from fellow GMA staffers Sam Champion, Robin Roberts and George Stephanopoulos.
"It's tremendous that GMA has this opportunity to extend its reach and bring something new to the afternoons,” said Elliott, who joined the ABC program as news anchor in May 2011 after several years on ESPN's SportsCenter. “It is gratifying to play a role in it and genuinely hope our audience will come along for the ride."
Spencer, GMA's lifestyles anchor, has been with the broadcast since moving over from The Insider shortly before Elliott's arrival. “I am beyond excited and honored to be part of this new chapter for the Good Morning America family," she said. "Good Afternoon America gives us the opportunity to reach a different audience, and better yet, spend a little more time with our morning viewers who want to be a part of the conversation and fun we plan on bringing to afternoon TV.”
GMA has been growing its ratings in both total viewers and the coveted adults 25-54 demo for the past year. In April, the series topped Today among total viewers for two weeks -- a feat it hadn't claimed in 16 years.
Although the evolving nature of ABC's daytime lineup -- most notably its shrinking roster of soap operas -- seems to leave the future of Good Afternoon America open for more than just the brief run, it's currently only scheduled to air until the Sept. 10 premiere of Katie Couric's new talk show.
ABC recently renewed daytime shows General Hospital and The Chew.