Maddow’s new MSNBC deal reportedly worth $30 million a year

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MSNBC is reportedly paying Rachel Maddow $30 million a year in the new contract she agreed earlier in August 2021, reports The Daily Beast.

As reported by CNN, some sources say the new contract calls for Maddow to end her daily show sometime in the spring of 2022 in favor of a weekly show — with about 30 editions per year (or about 60% of the weeks). Other sources seem to suggest Maddow will shift to specials.

Other outlets have reported that the show will still be called “The Rachel Maddow Show.”

The Daily Beast points out that NBCUniversal, the owner of MSNBC, was in a tough position — it clearly didn’t want to lose its highest rated star, but also doesn’t have a solid plan in place to replace her with someone who could potentially draw in eyeballs.

Maddow frequently gets close to 1 million more viewers than the next highest rated show on the network, and sometimes even managed to beat Fox.

That meant NBCU was willing to concede Maddow appearing daily for about two more years, hopefully buying itself time to figure out a replacement.

Earlier reports suggested Maddow made about $18 million under her current contract, which was set to expire in 2022.

Her new contract runs through the 2024 election and is said to contain multiple other opportunities for her to contribute content across the NBCUniversal empire, potentially including streaming, podcasts, broadcast and

The Daily Beast also reports that WarnerMedia and Disney tried to lure Maddow away to land on their streaming platforms.

Maddow also could have struck out on her own, producing her own content and brand and thereby keeping all the ad revenue she generates.

It’s also worth noting that $30 million a year would put Maddow closer to the estimated $40 million a year Fox star Sean Hannity makes. Maddow and Hannity air head-to-head at 9 p.m. eastern.

What hasn’t been made clear yet — and MSNBC might not even have a plan for this yet — is what happens the other four days a week during the 9 p.m. timeslot once Maddow goes weekly.

On one hand, it could be a good time to experiment with possible replacements for Maddow. It’s unlikely that any left leaning viewers would  switch to “Hannity” no matter what MSNBC airs, though CNN’s “Cuomo Prime Time” could have some appeal to these folks.

CNN’s Brian Stelter notes that Nicolle Wallace, Ali Velshi or Ari Melber could be possible replacements for Maddow’s 9 p.m. hour on days she’s not on the air.

While MSNBC could attempt to compete directly with Hannity by placing a conservative voice in the slot four days a week, that could be seen as unlikely given the network’s brand and potential damage to the reputation of MSNBC and NBC News should someone with such extreme opinions as Hannity start making controversial comments.

Another possibility is a more moderate voice, a sort of middle ground that could attract viewers disillusioned by either side of the political spectrum.