NBC News said it has signed Brian Williams, the anchor of its evening newscast and the public face of the NBCUniversal-owned unit, to a new long-term deal.
No financial terms were offered, but the Los Angeles Times reported that the pact could be for as much as five years, and that Williams could receive as much as $10 million per year. Deal comes shortly after Williams’ celebrated his 10th anniversary as anchor and managing editor of “The NBC Nightly News.”
“Brian is one of the most trusted journalists of our time. He has led this organization through every major news event for the last decade, from Hurricane Katrina in his first year in the anchor chair to his exclusive interview with Edward Snowden this year, through elections, wars, natural disasters, tragedies and triumphs,” NBC News prexy Deborah Turness said in a memo announcing the new deal. “In all of those cases he’s taken ‘Nightly News’s’ viewers to the heart of the stories that matter most in a way that’s uniquely his.”
“Nightly News” in recent months has faced a strong challenge to its ratings dominance rom the growth of ABC’s “World News” following the anchor handoff from Diane Sawyer to David Muir in September. Williams took over NBC’s flagship newscast in 2004 from Tom Brokaw.
Williams’ renewal at NBC News was no surprise, even though his name has been mentioned for a range of possible other gigs ranging from the host slot on “Jeopardy” to latenight talkers. He’s a frequent guest on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” where he demonstrates his sense of humor with the “Slow Jamming the News” segment and other bits.
Here’s a link to a video NBC News assembled to mark Williams’ 10th anniversary on “Nightly News.”