Matt Lauer, who was fired by NBC on Wednesday over a sexual harassment allegation, was one of many community’s most high-profile journalists and the face of one in all its most respected packages, “At this time,” because the mid-1990s.
Mr. Lauer spent 21 years at “At this time,” the longest tenure for the present, and was usually on the heart of rumored pressure amongst different anchors on this system. In his function, he led NBC’s protection throughout main information occasions, together with on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, and engaged in memorable interviews, reminiscent of his combative questioning of Tom Cruise in 2005.
In 1997, he changed Bryant Gumbel.
After a number of years because the information reader on “At this time,” Mr. Lauer changed Bryant Gumbel because the co-anchor on Jan. 6, 1997. His first week was filled with jitters and awkwardness, however these 5 days have been the second-best-rated week within the present’s historical past on the time.
Jeff Zucker, then the manager producer of “At this time,” known as Mr. Lauer “the hunk subsequent door.” He added, “It’s nice for us that ladies are drawn to him. However that wouldn’t work, and Matt wouldn’t succeed, if he couldn’t do the job.”
In 2001, he lined the assaults on Sept. 11.
On the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, Mr. Lauer was speaking to the author Richard Hack a few new Howard Hughes biography. The interview stopped, and Mr. Lauer mentioned he had to indicate viewers, however after a technical downside, he mentioned he would talk about the breaking information after a business break.
When the present returned, Mr. Lauer was seated subsequent to his co-anchor, Katie Couric, and the pair started to determine on air what had simply occurred in Decrease Manhattan.
In 2005, his interview with Tom Cruise turned heated.
The actor Tom Cruise joined “At this time” to debate his new film, “Battle of the Worlds,” with Mr. Lauer. For about eight minutes, they mentioned the film and the actor’s faith, Scientology. However then Mr. Lauer, reducing away from the pretaped interview, mentioned the second a part of their dialogue “will get a bit testy” and “the temper modifications a bit.”
What adopted grew to become a viral video hit earlier than the times of YouTube and Twitter. “Simply realizing people who find themselves on Ritalin isn’t sufficient,” Mr. Cruise informed him, pointing a finger, earlier than partaking in an assault on psychiatry. “You need to be a bit bit extra accountable —”
“I’m not prescribing Ritalin, Tom,” Mr. Lauer fired again.
In 2012, a tense goodbye to Ann Curry.
Throughout Mr. Lauer’s years on the present, he remained one of many few regular elements in a revolving door of latest reporters and anchors. However no transition turned extra tense and awkward — or crammed extra New York tabloid pages with rumors of infighting on the present — than the promotion of Ann Curry in 2011 as co-anchor alongside Mr. Lauer.
Her stint as an anchor was very temporary, lasting solely a yr earlier than she was pushed out in June 2012, after ABC’s “Good Morning America” gained floor within the rankings. Ms. Curry signed off in a tearful goodbye as her co-hosts regarded on.
A couple of months after her departure, The New York Occasions interviewed Ms. Curry about what unfolded throughout her temporary time subsequent to Mr. Lauer:
Many executives on the community by no means grasped how profoundly damage and humiliated Curry remained — not simply by her televised dismissal however by all of the backstage machinations that led to that fateful morning. Curry felt that the boys’ membership ambiance behind the scenes at “At this time” undermined her from the beginning, and she or he informed mates that her ultimate months have been a type of skilled torture. The rising indifference of Matt Lauer, her co-host, had damage essentially the most, however there was additionally only a common meanness on set.
In 2012, he was slammed for an Anne Hathaway interview.
The actress Anne Hathaway was interviewed in December 2012 to debate her new film, “Les Miserables,” for which she later gained an Oscar for greatest supporting actress. The day earlier than her interview, some celeb gossip websites had printed an upskirt picture of Ms. Hathaway exiting a automobile.
“Seen a variety of you recently,” Mr. Lauer mentioned as he started the interview.
He continued, “Let’s simply get it out of the best way. You had a bit little bit of a wardrobe malfunction the opposite evening.” Ms. Hathaway was praised for her response.
In 2016, he grilled, and interrupted, Hillary Clinton.
Mr. Lauer was the host of one of many main presidential boards in 2016 between Donald J. Trump and Hillary Clinton. Throughout the one-hour debate, Mr. Lauer interviewed the candidates individually, and he was criticized for asking Mr. Trump softer questions whereas he spent appreciable time urgent Ms. Clinton about her use of a non-public e mail server, and interrupting her repeatedly.
“Mr. Lauer discovered himself besieged on Wednesday night by critics of all political stripes, who accused the anchor of unfairness, sloppiness and even sexism in his dealing with of the occasion,” The Occasions wrote afterward.
In 2017, he was fired.
Mr. Lauer’s newest co-host, Savannah Guthrie, started the present on Wednesday showing to be preventing again tears. Subsequent to her behind the anchor desk was not Mr. Lauer however Hoda Kotb.
“It is a unhappy morning right here at ‘At this time’ and NBC Information,” Ms. Guthrie mentioned within the opening.