Natalie Morales reportedly headed the CBS’s ‘The Talk’ after NBC exit
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Morales announced that she was leaving NBC News after 22 years Friday, Oct. 1, 2021, hinting that she had a new job lined up.
The CBS produced daytime talk show has experienced a bumpy year after accusations of alleged racist and offensive comments ousted Sharon Osbourne — and Carrie Ann Inaba and Elaine Welteroth exited separately later.
Sources said that both left, at least in part, due to how the network and show handled the Osbourne incident.
If Morales does join “The Talk,” the would put the show’s talent headcount at five — which has been a common number of co-hosts since after its freshman season, which had six.
“The Talk,” which is often compared to ABC’s “The View,” broke ground by hiring O’Connell, the first male to be named a permanent co-host on either show. Adding Gbajabiamila, who also hosts NBC’s “American Ninja Warrior,” added the second male to the full time team.
Morales, who is of Brazilian and Puerto Rican descent, would add a self identified Latina to the show.
Morales previously anchored for “Today,” “Dateline,” MSNBC and “Access Hollywood,” all NBCUniversal owned properties. After a stint as news anchor and co-anchor of “Today,” she was shifted to the west coast and “Access,” but left that show in 2019.
She will continue to appear on “Dateline” for the remainder of 2021 because editions are also prepared well in advance.
If she does join CBS, it’s not immediately clear when that would happen. Much of that could depend on what exit deal, if any, she was able to negotiate with NBC and if she has any type of non-compete that would bar her from appearing on a daytime network talk show.
It’s also not clear what, if any, title she would get at the table — such as being offered the moderator spot.
In many ways, her star had been on the fall at NBC — given that she had been taken off anchor roles at both “Today” and “Access Hollywood” within a three year period.
Although she stilled appeared on “Today” as west coast anchor, her presence on the network had been largely cut back.
It’s also not immediately clear how well she might do with the more free-wielding, informal format “The Talk” uses.
While she does have experience with less formal hosting roles, some insiders note her on air presence often appears more serious and “by the book” and apparently wasn’t the ideal fit for the more laid back “Access” role. That said, this style could make her a good fit for the moderator role on “The Talk” — who often has to deftly manage keeping conversations on point, on time and handling transitions between topics well.