Are Katie Couric’s Days At CBS Coming To An End?
First Published: April 10, 2008 3:27 PM EDT Credit: Access Hollywood
NEW YORK, N.Y. -- Is Katie Couric on her way out as the anchor of the “CBS Evening News?”
According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, Couric and the network will likely part ways before her contract is up in 2011.
In fact, Couric’s last day could come as soon as January, following the presidential inauguration.
“It could be less than a year from now, which would be less than halfway through her contract,” Sam Schechner of the Wall Street Journal told Access Hollywood on Thursday.
So what’s behind the rumored split?
The pressure to cut costs (under her contract, which began in 2006, Couric makes about $15 million per year), combined with record low ratings for the show.
The “CBS Evening News” recently drew in an average of 5.9 million viewers, compared to NBC’s “Nightly News with Brian Williams,” which averaged 8.3 million viewers and ABC’s “World News with Charles Gibson,” which drew 8 million viewers.
“They brought her in to appeal to younger viewers and younger viewers still aren’t watching the evening news,” Schechner added.
However, it should be noted that the CBS news program has been stuck in third place for the last 15 years, long before Couric came on board.
And while news of the impending split has began to circulate, a rep for CBS told Access Hollywood there are no immediate plans for any major change.
“We are very proud of the ‘CBS Evening News,’ particularly our political coverage, and we have no plans for any changes regarding Katie or the broadcast,” a rep for CBS said in a statement to Access.
Even Couric seems to be content in her current situation.
“I am working hard and having fun. My colleagues continue to impress me with their commitment to the newscast, and I am very proud of the show we put on every day,” she said in her own statement to Access.
Despite her statement, a source close to Couric told Access that CBS has not put promised resources into the show, and claims “other outlets are interested in her.”
One possibility for Couric’s next gig could a rumored succession to Larry King when his contract expires in 2009.
Additionally, The Washington Post reported CBS may offer her a talk show or full-time role on “60 Minutes” if she steps down.
As for Katie’s possible replacement, Anderson Cooper and Harry Smith have both been rumored options.
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