The TV industry’s worst kept secret has finally been confirmed: Karl Stefanovic will return to his roots at Today in 2020, co-hosting Nine’s breakfast program alongside Allison Langdon.
Langdon and Stefanovic will be joined Tracy Vo as newsreader, Alex Cullen as sports presenter, Tim Davies as weather presenter, and Brooke Boney as entertainment presenter.
Today will resume in 2020 on Monday, January 6, which was speculated last week. B&T understands Seven’s Sunrise team will not return until the end of January, which would give Today a head start to start earning some viewers before the official 2020 ratings year begins.
Nine director of morning television Steven Burling said: “Ally and Karl are quite simply two of the best news broadcasters in the country.
“Both have reported from conflict zones, they are more than comfortable going toe-to-toe against our most formidable politicians and quite honestly they’re who you’d turn to in times of breaking news, be it here in Australia or anywhere in the world.
“Importantly though, Ally and Karl also know how to have a good laugh, they both have an infectious, self-deprecating sense of humour that I believe will appeal to viewers and the rest of the on-air team.
Burling also praised the rest of the Today lineup.
“We’ve brought together a team that Australia will love waking up with in 2020. As one of Perth’s most recognisable news presenters, Tracy will anchor the news bulletins; Tim has resonated with viewers presenting weather on weekends, balancing light hearted segments with the sometimes dire forecasts covering bushfires and weather disasters.
“Alex Cullen is a trusted voice on Australian television and we welcome him to TODAY, where his recent fill-in stints have won over viewers. And Brooke will continue the great work of delivering entertainment news and interviewing some of the world’s biggest stars.”
Nine had a standout year, celebrating its best rating share performance of all time, winning the year and ending Seven’s 12 years of dominance. The perennially struggling Today was its weak spot, so it will prove interesting to see how Stefanovic and Langdon will fare on the breakfast spot.
The Today debacle aside, Nine rarely put a foot wrong in 2019.
From the buyout of Fairfax titles and Macquarie Media, while countless of its TV offerings have been huge hits (MAFS, Lego Masters and The Block all dominated this year’s ratings), it’s unlikely Nine will have a bad year in 2020.
Over on Weekend Today, Rebecca Maddern will join Richard Wilkins as hosts. Lara Vella will present news and cover Jayne Azzopardi while she’s on maternity leave. Lauren Phillips will present weather.
Rounding out the morning programming will be Today Extra, hosted by David Campbell and Sylvia Jeffreys. Belinda Russell will cover Jeffreys while she’s on maternity leave.
Former Today host Deb Knight will move to Macquarie Media’s 2GB/4BC, while Georgie Gardner will present weekend news. And after reading Today‘s news in 2019, Tom Steinfort will re-join 60 Minutes for reporting duties, while Stevie Jacobs will be leaving the show to pursue other interests.