Disgraced former Today show anchor Matt Lauer has been totally removed from the program's 70th-anniversary celebrations this Friday, despite strong objections by pal Hoda Kotb.
“Hoda is still friends with Matt and doesn’t think it is right to pretend that he had nothing to do with the show's huge success. You can hate the sin but love the sinner, However, Savannah (Guthrie) is having none of it. She wants Matt and his legacy completely scrubbed, and so it has been,” sources tell Radar.
Insiders add that the original plan was to have as many former hosts as possible return to the studio. But with the current pandemic situation, and the fact that Savannah herself will be out of the studio with COVID-19, plans have changed — however, nothing has changed as far as including Lauer.
“What Matt did was unforgivable. There is no way he will ever set foot into studio 1A ever again. In fact, his face will never appear on NBC ever again,” adds a source. “When Betty White and Bob Saget passed NBC pulled all the old footage they had of them, except footage of Betty or Bob with Matt. Hoda is a trying good friend but this is not a battle she is going to win.”
Since its premiere on January 14, 1952, the Today show has set the standard for morning television. The program's legacy was scrutinized after several women came forward with their own allegations against the beloved Today show host.
NBC News axed Lauer in 2017, and we're told he's still sulking over getting canned.
While Hoda seems to be still supporting her friend off-camera, Lauer's longtime co-host Katie Couric isn't. In October, Couric sat down with Savannah speaking openly about the hot topics in her controversial book, Going There, including her ex-TV partner's sexual misconduct scandal and her reaction to his firing.
Claiming she has "no relationship" with Lauer, Couric trashed him by calling his actions "reckless," "abusive," and "disturbing." Meanwhile, Lauer is continuing to support disgruntled TV host Chris Cuomo.
He was fired from CNN after the network discovered evidence that he went to great lengths to help cover up his embattled brother Andrew Cuomo's sexual harassment scandal. Following his firing, Chris was hit with his own sexual misconduct allegations.