Katie Couric Talks to Matt Lauer About Her Uncertain Future
Amid rumors – and even New York Times reports – about a Meredith Vieira-and-Matt-Lauer-less future for the Today show and Katie Couric's current job hunt as her CBS News contract comes to an end, Couric returned to NBC Studio 1A Wednesday morning, where Today" host Lauer grilled her on what she plans to do.
Don't set the DVR just yet, however: Couric insists she hasn't finalized anything – or even chosen a particular path to take.
"I'm not sure. I'm really excited about my future," the TV personality, 54, told her former co-anchor. "I love my job. I'm trying to figure out what I'm going to do."
It has been nearly five years since Couric was employed at Today, the NBC morning show she called home for 15 years. Her CBS Evening News job, despite some tangible high points, has been plagued by poor ratings and criticism over her high salary, which caused budgets at the network's once-vaunted news division to be slashed.
"I don't have any regrets," Couric said. Steering the Evening News – she was the first woman in American TV history to anchor a network news program solo – has been, in Couric's words, "a privilege and an honor."
Pressed by Lauer that she was possibly being coy and had arrived at a decision about her future plans but was simply holding back from making any announcement, Couric denied any posturing.
"No," she said, "I really haven't. I'm in the middle of figuring it out."
Asking about rumor that she was envisioning a syndicated talk show, Lauer inquired if Couric's model would be Oprah Winfrey or Ellen DeGeneres. Couric said the creative freedom of such a format appealed to her and would allow her to "pick subjects and really dig deep" – but, again, she said nothing was definite, yet.
Tuesday on The View, Couric – in the middle of a publicity blitz for her book, The Best Advice I Ever Got: Lessons from Extraordinary Lives – essentially presented the same story to Barbara Walters.
As Walters urged her to come clean and just announce she will be leaving the CBS Evening News, Couric replied, "I'm in the middle of a decision. I'm not in a position to discuss it at this point." Couric added that she loved her job – a point she also made to Lauer.
Still, she did make her former co-host a promise. (She also hinted to Lauer that Walters got under her skin.) Couric said she'd make "a decision in the next few weeks … I need to give the headlines back to Charlie [Sheen]."
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