Daytime TV Impact Honorees

These stars have new syndie talkshows people are talking about:

Katie Couric
Host and exec producer, “Katie”

In one of the most anticipated moves in daytime TV, Couric will enter the fray with “Katie” in September. She’ll look to move on from “The CBS Evening News” and return to the glory days of NBC’s “Today” show. Early signs are positive: In January, the new ABC/Disney talker announced it’ll be available in more than 93% of U.S. homes. Couric will be collaborating with her longtime “Today” executive producer Jeff Zucker; expect the live production to cover a lot of ground. “It feels as if everything I’ve done professionally up until this point has prepared me to do this show,” Couric says. “Being a local reporter and anchoring the ‘Today’ show and ‘The CBS Evening News’ has enabled me to really cover a wide range of stories and issues.”

Trisha Goddard
Host, “Trisha”

Goddard hosted popular talk shows in Australia and England before doing “Maury” as substitute host/conflict-resolution expert. On her new show from NBCUniversal, the mental health activist guides troubled guests. Goddard, who broke ground as Australia’s first black TV anchorwoman, is the mother of two teen girls. She chronicled her struggles, including a bout of breast cancer in 2008, in her autobiography. “I firmly believe that the life experiences of the host influence the content and nature of the talk show,” she says. As for translating for U.S. audiences, Goddard won’t use “some of the fruitier Australian terms, (but) there are a few Trish-isms I hope to introduce.”

Steve Harvey
Host and exec producer, “Steve Harvey”

Harvey makes a promise: “No one in daytime will be funnier than me,” he says. His new talkshow, from NBCUniversal, centers on regular folks, with occasional celeb guests. In 2010, the stand-up comic, author and radio show host began hosting “Family Feud,” proving his solid connection with civilians. It’s a gift he’ll use in his talkshow as he shares his own experiences of divorce, marriage and parenthood. “I’m not an oatmeal man, where you sprinkle in the flavor of the day. I have my own opinions,” he says. “You might not always agree, and that’s OK.”

Ricki Lake
Host, “The Ricki Lake Show

The secret to Lake’s new series, from Twentieth TV, is social media integration. The show complements a “Friends of Ricki” Facebook page that allows viewers to throw in their two cents on production meetings. And though it’s been several years since Lake has had a talkshow of her own on the air, exec producer Lisa Kridos assures she hasn’t lost her daytime presence and energy: “She’s such a pro that we didn’t have to deal with someone who doesn’t know how to do TV,” Kridos says, adding that during pilot production, “she walked out (on stage), and it’s like, ‘Girl, you belong here.’ ”

Jeff Probst
Host, “Jeff Probst”

As the host of “Survivor,” Probst likes a good challenge, but hosting a daily talkshow wasn’t one he’d had in mind for himself. “I’d had conversations with people about doing a daytime talkshow for several years, and in most cases I’d walk away saying, ‘I just don’t know what my voice is,’ ” he recalls. It was marriage to Lisa Ann Russell that changed his tune. “Being in a relationship with children and having this life open up broadened my view on a lot of things and made me relatable,” he says. “I realized there’s a lot to talk about.” He’ll tackle the new show, from CBS Television Distribution, head on, and Probst says he’s ready to be put to the test. “We have a very clear idea of what we want to do, and we’re going to do our very best show,” he says. “I don’t have any fear.”

Return to main page >>

Filed Under:

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more
Post A Comment 0