Matt Lauer is a happy man, and who wouldn’t be after signing a contract worth $20 million per year? That’s how much NBC will pay the “Today” host to stick around a little longer. Lauer has been making big bucks for quite some, and now this contract will keep him on the show for at least another two years, according to Page Six.
Multiple sources told the gossip page that Lauer actually signed his sweet new contract months ago.
“The new deal will take him well into 2018,” said a source familiar with the deal. But another NBC insider said that Lauer’s new “multiyear” pact could actually be longer.
There was some concern that Lauer was plotting his exit from the morning show after the election. Remember the avalanche of criticism he took after he moderated a live prime-time forum with President-elect Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton? He was harshly criticized for not being tough enough on Trump by throwing him softball questions, while grilling Clinton.
But it’s not like it was the first time there’s been speculation about Lauer’s future with the show. Back in 2014, there was some doubt that he’d be back, but then he signed a two-year deal for the same $20 million per year.
That’s good dough if you can get it, and Lauer probably figures waking up in the wee hours, even on those cold bitterly cold New York mornings, isn’t all that bad considering the handsome payoff.
Plus, “Today” has been heating up in the ratings recently, beating “Good Morning America” for the top spot among adults in the 25-to-54-year-old demographic for 63 of the past 64 weeks.
Getting Lauer back also helps NBC forget about recent troubled waters with the the departure of Billy Bush, who was caught on a now-infamous 2005 tape making lewd and crude comments about women on a bus with Trump. While Trump went on to win the presidency, Bush was swept off the show.