Tamron Hall Learned She'd Lose Today Show Timeslot Moments Before Going Live on Air
Tamron Hall is abruptly parting ways with NBC after an unexpected shakeup at the Today show left her hurt and offended, sources tell PEOPLE
It was announced last week that Megyn Kelly, who left Fox News last month for a new role at NBC News, is set to host an hour of the Today Show, replacing the slot held by Hall and her co-anchor Al Roker. And on Wednesday, the network announced that Hall, 46, would be leaving NBC News and MSNBC when her contract expires this month, despite being offered a multi-million dollar contract to stay.
“She was offered a lot of money to stay … and she turned it down,” a source tells PEOPLE about Hall’s exit. “She doesn’t currently have another offer, but her contract was up. And they offered her a new deal.”
“Insiders are surprised that she left,” one source close the situation tells PEOPLE, despite many fans’ decision to voice their disappointment on Twitter after the Kelly announcement.
According to the source, when news of Kelly’s arrival was announced last week, Hall’s demeanor on the NBC set didn’t appear to change. “She was very much herself last week,” the source says. “She was bubbly as usual on air. She may have been annoyed, but she didn’t show it on air.”
Another insider confirms Hall “been nothing short of a team player” since the shakeup — though the way the way the news was delivered seems to have contributed to her decision to move on.
“Tamron has been anchoring all over the network in the past few weeks, filling in for Savannah Guthrie and for Lester Holt in addition to MSNBC,” says the source. “And just a few days ago, she received an email from the executive producer congratulating the 9 a.m. team for being No. 1 for the last seven weeks. Then on Friday, minutes before going on MSNBC they told her that she and Al are being taken off the air.”
Adds the insider: “She couldn’t believe they told her right before she had to go on air. She was definitely shocked.”
Still, says the insider, “In Tamron Hall style, she went on air and acted like the classy professional that she is.”
But a network source points out that, “It was Tamron’s agent, not NBC management, who broke the news to her just before she went on air on MSNBC.”
And although the reasoning for Hall’s exit has not yet been disclosed, a third source tells PEOPLE “there’s bad blood.”
Regardless of Hall’s own reasons for departing, the source tells PEOPLE that Roker, 62, “is still a huge, integral part of the show … [and] has a long-term contract.”
Hall joined MSNBC and NBC in 2007 and became part of the Today team in 2014 as a co-anchor of Today’s Take, the morning show’s third hour. Hall also anchored MSNBC Live, a daily news program airing at 11 a.m. on MSNBC.
In the statement released Wednesday, Hall said, “The last 10 years have been beyond anything I could have imagined, and I’m grateful. I’m also very excited about the next chapter. To all my great colleagues, I will miss you and I will be rooting for you.”
—With NATALIE STONE