The Today show is reportedly set for yet another huge shake-up, just months after the cast was overhauled following a string of offscreen controversies.
This time, the program’s anchors Georgie Gardner and Deborah Knight may be set to get a third co-host, as executives scramble to bring back the breakfast show’s once-strong viewership.
Tom steps up
Newsreader Tom Steinfort is rumoured to be taking on a more prominent role beside the pair who recently made history as Australia’s first all-female breakfast duo.
“Today's hosting duo Deb Knight and Georgie Gardner will effectively become a trio,” The Australian reported.
“Expect to see more of Steinfort in all facets of Today from now on, breaking up what viewers perceive to be a competitive dynamic between Gardner and Knight.”
The news comes amid mounting reports Today’s former star Karl Stefanovic, who was axed in December after 14 years, is also keen to make a return to the breakfast show.
“Everyone just blamed Karl for a long time, but he has been gone for almost six months now and viewers are still turning off,” a source told New Idea.
The same report speculated that Karl’s longtime pal Ben Fordham is also being looked at as a potential host, and is actually favoured over Karl.
“[Channel Nine bosses] are ready to do whatever it takes to secure Ben now, because in truth they think he can save the show,” the source said.
However, Ben, who is currently a radio presenter on 2GB, is unlikely to take on the role. He’s previously said he doesn’t want the breakfast TV job, joking, “I wake up with Jodie, Freddy and Pearl and that will continue for a long, long time,” in reference to his family.
There is also speculation he’s hanging out to take over from Alan Jones at 2GB, but the shock jock has just signed a new two-year contract.
Yahoo Lifestyle has contacted Channel Nine for comment.
Today show overhaul
The program’s radical casting switch-up earlier this year saw Tom take over from Sylvia Jeffreys as newsreader, while Deb Knight stepped into Karl’s hosting shoes and Brooke Boney joined as entertainment reporter.
But two former Today stars who certainly won’t be making a return are both Sylvia and her husband Peter Stefanovic.
While Karl’s younger brother has nabbed his ‘dream job’ fronting Sky News’ breakfast show, First Edition, his wife remains one of Nine’s most popular presenters after landing a new gig reporting for A Current Affair.
“I’m thrilled to sink my teeth into a brand new project,” she said at the time her ACA role was announced.
“Opportunity often knocks when you least expect it and I’m ready to dive right in to what’s ahead of me.”
Got a story tip? Send it to email@example.com
Or sign up to our daily newsletter here.