Karl Stefanovic needed to 'crash and burn' before Today return

Sarah Carty
Senior Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
Karl Stefanovic 'needed to crash and burn' before he returned to the Today show, a top Nine executive has said. Photo: Channel Nine

Karl Stefanovic needed to ‘crash and burn’ before making his Today show return in 2020, a top Nine executive has claimed. 

In December last year, while he was on honeymoon in Aspen after marrying Jasmine Yarbrough, Karl was sacked from his job as co-host of the popular breakfast show, after 15 years at the desk. 

But less than a year later, in November, it was announced that the former king of morning TV would be reclaiming his role in January 2020. 

Karl found out while on honeymoon in Aspen with his new wife Jasmine Yarbrough, that he would be axed from the show in December 2018. Photo: Getty Images

Now, Nine’s National Director of News and Current Affairs Darren Wick, has claimed the reshuffle was needed at the time, however, he admits the network “didn’t get it right”. 

“I think a year on, he’s very much in a different headspace to where he was a year ago,” Nine’s National Director of News and Current Affairs Darren Wick told the Daily Telegraph.

He went on to say the pressure Karl was going through at the time had “spun out of control”. 

“It was a crash and burn. It’s one of the crashes and burns that he probably needed to have.”

Now, he believes Karl is happier and more content in both his personal and professional life and he’s “in a great space”.

Karl axed from Today

In December 2018, the Nine Network announced Karl’s shock exit with a statement, revealing the embattled TV presenter woul ‘step off’ the breakfast program.

“For the last 14 years I’ve co-hosted the best show on television,” Karl said in a statement at the time.

“I can’t thank Nine enough for the opportunity. I never in my wildest dreams thought I would be good enough to host this grand show for so long.

“Thanks to our viewers mostly, you are what matters most. It’s been a tough time. Thanks for hanging in there. I look forward to seeing you in another capacity at this great Network soon.”

Karl will take the helm of the morning show with Allison Langdon. Photo: Channel Nine

Karl Stefanovic glad to return to ‘best job’ at Today

It was confirmed on November 9 that former Today show host Karl Stefanovic would reclaim his plum role on Channel Nine’s morning TV program in 2020.

In a statement shared with Yahoo Lifestyle at the time, the 45-year-old admitted he never expected to return to what he described as ‘the best live job in Australia’ - despite the ‘enormous pressures’ and ‘pitfalls’.

“Going back to the Today Show is not something that I thought would come up again. I thought my time was up but then when I was sounded out about it, it got me thinking. It's a big job with enormous pressures and I know only too well some of those pitfalls, but it is also without question the best live job in Australia,” he said.

It was also revealed that Weekend Today’s Allison Langdon will join ‘unpredictable’ Karl as a new co-host next year.

Karl and Allison will be joined by Perth reporter Tracy Vo in the newsreader role, with Alex Cullen, formerly from Sunday Night, doing sport.

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