Brian Williams sees himself as more than an anchorman. According to reports, he eyed several other jobs that he thought were also in line with his talents. He is currently on a six-month suspension from his position as anchor of “NBC Nightly News,” and his future is uncertain since he admitted to embellishing on his experiences in Iraq.
Over the years, Williams had appeared on numerous other programs. He played himself on “30 Rock,” hosted Saturday Night Live, and “slow-jammed” the news on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.” But he apparently yearned for more than just guest spots on other peoples’ shows. He wanted — and may still want — his own talk show. According to an article in New York Magazine, Brian Williams wasn’t satisfied reading a news prompter.
A couple of years ago, Williams told NBC Universal CEO Steve Burke that he wanted to take over “The Tonight Show” from then-current host Jay Leno, who at the time, had the top-rated talk show in the time slot. When Williams pitched that idea to Burke, it fell on deaf ears. Instead, he offered Williams a weekly prime-time program called Rock Center. Rock Center never became the variety/talk show Williams envisioned, and it was cancelled after two seasons.
Williams also pitched his taking over from David Letterman, according to a high-level source, but CBS CEO Les Moonves declined. Stephen Colbert was subsequently chosen to replace Letterman, and the new Late Night is set to premiere on September 8, according to CNN Money.
Prior to Williams suspension, NBC News president Deborah Turness rewarded Williams with a very special present in December 2014, which she thought would keep him as a news anchor; she purchased revered American broadcast journalist Edward R. Murrow’s mahogany writing desk, as if to remind him that he was a modern-day Murrow, an American broadcaster trusted far-and-wide without question. The gesture apparently touched Williams, who decided to stay with NBC for another five years.
Ironically, the maelstrom regarding Brian Williams’ “misstatements” about his time in Iraq subsequently broke, leading to his suspension; he was no longer the trusted anchor of years past. It’s unclear what Brian Williams’ future holds regarding any type of journalism career. Some see the six-month suspension as a possible exit strategy, according to FOX News.
Is the door forever closed to Brian Williams? Only time will tell. But, according to an Inquisitr article, NBC may be looking to bring Katie Couric back as Williams’ replacement.
Do you think that Brian Williams will or can return as a respected news anchor? Can you see him having a future as a talk show host?
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