Katie Couric's Big News Day Arrives

Katie Couric's Big News Day Arrives
Katie Couric
Marion Curtis/Startraks photo

updated 09/05/2006 at 08:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/05/2006 08:20AM

Tuesday is Katie Couric's good news day, with the 15-year Today show veteran set to make her bow as the new host of CBS Evening News – and TV's first-ever solo female anchor for a major broadcast network.

While many details of her first broadcast are being kept under wraps, it is known that Couric will step on to a newly designed set and the show's new theme music was composed by James Horner, who won an Oscar for his Titanic score.

Couric's newscast will include an ongoing commentary segment featuring outside speakers called "Free Speech," but the network is guarding her guest list like a state secret. Still, word did leak out that she will interview President Bush at the White House on Wednesday.

Legendary CBS anchor Walter Cronkite recorded an introduction for Couric's first show, although it remains to be seen whether it will be used, CBS rep Sandra Genelius tells the Associated Press.

At a reported salary of $15 million a year, Couric, 49, is being seen as the network's great hope to raise Evening News out of the ratings basement, where it has remained in third place behind Brian Williams at NBC's top-ranked Nightly News and Charles Gibson at ABC's World News.

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