Matt Lauer, King of Morning Television

Matt Lauer has anchored the ‘Today’ Show for 17 years, longer than any other person. And he’ll be in his chair at least a few years longer after agreeing to a new, multi-year contract worth an estimated $25 million a year.

“The only question was whether he wanted to continue to do the job and everything that it demands. That’s all that had to be decided,” says (NBC News President Steve) Capus, who adds that there was no haggling and very little negotiation at all. “His is a unique situation. We mutually agreed to something awfully fast.”

Lauer is professional, collegial, a “dream to work with,” says (Ann) Curry. At least visibly, he’s not tortured by the personal demons that turn so many news stars into anchor monsters, throwing tantrums and abusing their staff. “He’s the real deal,” says Today senior producer Marc Victor. “What you see on-air is what you get. And you can’t say that about too many TV people. There’s always the TV personality, and then there’s the real them. With him, he’s that same guy.”

Check out The Hollywood Reporter’s in-depth interview with Matt Lauer. Great piece. My favorite part? Lauer is on Twitter under an alias. He says he doesn’t tweet, he just lurks.

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