Lisa Wilkinson dishes on Karl Stefanovic's divorce: 'Disgusting to witness'

Lisa Wilkinson has dished on her former Today co-host Karl Stefanovic's divorce from Cassandra Thorburn in her new memoir, It Wasn’t Meant To Be Like This.

The Sunday Project star said it was "disgusting to witness" how Karl, 47, was treated by the paparazzi after finalising his split from his wife of 21 years in October 2017.

Lisa Wilkinson on The Project on July 8, 2021. Photo: Channel 10.
Lisa Wilkinson has dished on Karl Stefanovic's divorce in her new memoir. Photo: Channel 10.

Lisa, 61, recalled a particular incident at an airport when she says Karl was 'goaded' by a pap about the reasons he and Cassandra, 50, had parted ways.

"At one airport, as we came through the security doors, I heard a pap continually goading him, 'Hey Karl, why did you leave your wife?'" she wrote.

Lisa goes on to applaud Karl for ignoring the taunt and walking away.

"It was disgusting to witness, but Karl didn't flinch; he just kept walking. He refused to give them what they wanted – a blow-up.

"His restraint was extraordinary."


Karl Stefanovic and his wife Cassandra Thorburn arrive on the red carpet ahead of the 2011 Logie Awards at Crown Palladium on May 1, 2011 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)
Karl Stefanovic and Cassandra Thorburn (at the 2011 Logies) were married for 21 years before separating in 2016 and divorcing a year later. Photo: Getty Images.

Karl to Lisa: 'Don't react'

Lisa, on the other hand, admitted she was ready to defend her co-star — and it was Karl who told her to calm down.

"I, on the other hand, wanted to yell at them to back off, and it took every bit of strength I had in me not to.

"Sensing my fury, Karl just mumbled under his breath next to me, 'Don't react.'"

Karl met his current wife, former model and shoe designer Jasmine Yarbrough, 36, five months after his split from Cassandra in 2016.

Karl and Jasmine announced their engagement in February 2018 and were married in a lavish three-day ceremony in Mexico in December.

The couple welcomed their first child, daughter Harper, on May 1st, 2020. Harper, 18 months, is Karl's fourth child; he shares Jackson, 20, Ava, 15, and River, 13, with Cassandra.

Karl Stefanovic and Jasmine Stefanovic attend the annual Gold Dinner at Fox Studios on May 30, 2019 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)
Karl married shoe designer Jasmine Yarbrough in December 2018. Photo: Getty Images.

Lisa tells all

The most controversial claims from Lisa's new memoir so far have come from the chapter dedicated to her former Today co-host, Karl Stefanovic, and her infamous ousting from the Nine Network after a reported pay dispute.

In the book, Lisa details how her 11-year working relationship with Karl crumbled when he gave her the 'cold shoulder' after declining an invite to her and her husband's wedding vow renewal ceremony at the eleventh hour in 2017.

Their bond was already hanging by a thread, according to Lisa, who claims Karl backed out of their deal to team up and renegotiate their salaries together with Nine in order to secure his own $2 million a year contract.

As well as her time on Today, It Wasn’t Meant To Be Like This also covers an alleged sexual assault Lisa suffered at the age of 15, her extensive journalism career and her relationship with her husband Peter FitzSimons.

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