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The 9 a.m. hour of the Today show will move from Studio 6A in 30 Rock to Studio 1A, the flagship streetside studio across the street from NBC headquarters. The change will be effective Jan. 7, an NBC News spokesperson confirmed.
The move basically abolishes the last remnants of what was once Megyn Kelly Today. One of the features of Kelly’s show was a live audience, and Studio 6A could hold more than 200 people. But it also added as much as $50 million annually to the budget of Megyn Kelly Today, according to multiple well-placed sources.The full-time editorial and technical staff of Kelly’s hour will continue to work on the 9 a.m. hour when it moves into Studio 1A, and there are efforts underway to find positions for some freelance crew members. There also will be a live — albeit it small — in-studio audience.
Since NBC News officially canceled Kelly’s Today hour in October, various Today anchors have been filling in including Jenna Bush Hager, Al Roker, Craig Melvin, Willie Geist, Dylan Dreyer and Sheinelle Jones. Nightly News anchor Lester Holt and correspondents Stephanie Gosk and Natalie Morales also have filled in. That will continue, as the network has yet to name a permanent anchor team.
By the time Kelly’s show was canceled, it was averaging 2.4 million viewers a day, well behind the 3 million viewers that tune in to timeslot leader Live With Kelly and Ryan on ABC. Kelly’s show was pulling in 400,000 fewer viewers than Today’s Take, the cheaper show it replaced in the fall of 2017. It was co-hosted by Roker and Tamron Hall, who left the network rather than accept a diminished role to make room for Kelly.
Hall is now readying her own daytime show for ABC, and the company on Dec. 3 announced that her show had been picked up in 24 Hearst-owned TV markets, which means it is now sold in 50 percent of the country.
Meanwhile, Kelly’s representatives are still embroiled in exit negotiations with NBC.
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