7:47am PT by Rick Porter
Natalie Morales Out as 'Access' Anchor
About a month after longtime executive producer Rob Silverstein was let go at Access and Access Live, anchor Natalie Morales is following him out the door.
Morales is out at Access, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed, but is staying with NBC News as Today West Coast anchor and Dateline correspondent.
Co-anchor Kit Hoover is staying with Access and will anchor the show solo for the time being. Scott Evans will also remain as co-host of Access Live.
Morales joined the twin syndicated shows in 2016.
In a memo to staff on his last day, Silverstein — who had been with what was then called Access Hollywood since the show's inception in 1996 — said his creative vision for the shows "differs from [that of] the management team." Maureen FitzPatrick, whose work on syndicated strips includes The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Hot Bench and Daily Blast Live, is taking over as executive producer of the two programs.
Both Access shows average about 2 million viewers, putting them in the middle of the pack among the entertainment-focused syndicated shows. Entertainment Tonight, which invented the genre, remains the leader with about 4.8 million daily viewers.
Morales sent the following memo to the Access staff.
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.