Lauer crisis experts: “Today” host Matt Lauer reportedly sought a crisis-specialized public relations team to deal with the fallout over former co-host Ann Curry’s firing, reported The New York Post’s Page Six.
Unnamed sources told the Post that NBC denied Lauer’s request and has forced the host to “[take] matters into his own hands.”
“Matt’s wanted to bring in an outside p.r. agency,” the source said. “He lost faith and has wanted a crisis team in place. Since they haven’t hired an outside agency, he’s taking matters into his own hands.”
Since Curry’s dismissal last year, ratings for “Today” have gone downhill. Recently, the show posted second place in the morning show ratings for the first time in 15 years, losing to ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
The ratings slide, however, prompted NBC to take a look at a public relations firm last year, but it never went through.
“They were looking for [outside firms] in the fall,” the source added. “But it was a case of the higher-ups at Comcast not wanting to bring someone in.”
Over the past few months, there have been a number of reports and even a book detailing NBC’s situation over the past year.
According to the book “Top of the Morning: Inside the Cutthroat World of Morning TV,” Lauer reportedly expressed disdain for Curry.
“I can’t believe I am sitting next to this woman,” he once said.
The book also claimed that when NBC executives hatched a plan to oust Curry, they called it “Operation Bambi.”
An executive reportedly said of the name that it “may have been far less important in the general sweep of history, but it was no less earnest an endeavor than the Nazis’ Operation Sea Lion or America’s Operation Desert Storm.”