Ann Curry announces she is leaving ‘Today’ show with teary goodbye

"Today" show hosts Ann Curry and Matt Lauer appear on set.

Ann Curry announced on Thursday she was leaving as co-host of NBC’s “Today” show.

Fighting back tears, Curry told viewers at the end of Thursday’s program she would be leaving the show and taking up a new role reporting from around the world for NBC.

“For all of you who saw me as a ground breaker, I am sorry I could not carry the ball across the finish line. But man, I did try,” she told viewers in an emotional farewell.

Since Curry moved from news reader to co-host on June 9, 2011, the morning show’s margin over ABC’s “Good Morning America”, or GMA, has steadily shrunk.

Curry’s departure from the early morning mainstay has been widely expected.

The Hollywood Reporter reported on Tuesday that the job had been offered to Savannah Guthrie, who hosts the show’s third hour. An NBC spokeswoman was not available to comment.

USA Today reports that Curry signed a new multiyear contract with Comcast-owned NBC, and will lead a seven-person unit charged with covering worldwide stories.

Curry had $10 million remaining on her four-year contract, according to a person with knowledge of her agreement.

Since Curry moved from news reader to co-host on June 9, 2011, the morning show’s margin over ABC’s “Good Morning America”, or GMA, has steadily shrunk.

With Meredith Vieira sitting next to co-host Matt Lauer, the show regularly beat GMA, and led by 650,000 viewers the week before Curry replaced her, according to Nielsen numbers supplied by media planning and advertising agency Horizon Media.

GMA on ABC, which is owned by Walt Disney Co, drew more viewers in four of the 10 weeks before June 11, 2011, among those who watched it live or recorded the same day.

“Throughout all the turmoil, Ann Curry has taken the high road and has handled the situation with class and dignity,” said Brad Adgate, Horizon’s senior vice president of research. “Unfortunately it’s a personality-driven show and Matt Lauer is the star, so I suspect the chemistry was lacking on air.”

Curry was Lauer’s third co-host, following Vieira and Katie Couric, who preceded Lauer and left in 2006 after 15 years to anchor CBS’s evening news program.

Curry succeeded Lauer as the early morning show’s news anchor in 1997, when Lauer replaced Brian Gumble.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Thousands protest in New York over Eric Garner…

The Reverend Al Sharpton led thousands of chanting but peaceful activists in a march across Staten Island on Saturday to protest the death of Eric Garner.

International

Egypt calls for Gaza ceasefire as fighting rages

Egypt called on Israel and the Palestinians on Saturday to halt fire and resume peace talks, but violence continued unabated.

National

SpaceX rocket terminated in Texas test flight

A Space Exploration Technologies’ Falcon 9 rocket suffered an anomaly shortly after launch on a test flight, triggering its automatic termination system.

Local

MAP: New York City Street Closures August 22,…

The Percy Sutton Harlem 5K and NYC Family Health Walk-a-thon and Pakistan Day Parade and Fair will cause traffic delays and street closures in New York City this weekend. Plan…

Music

Arcade Fire concert review, Massachusetts, Aug. 19

Arcade Fire take the opposite approach of "Shut up and play the hits," and it works in their favor on the "Reflektor" tour.

Television

Recap: 'The Knick,' Season 1, Episode 3, 'The…

The third episode of Steven Soderbergh's "The Knick" finds Dr. Thackery (Clive Owen) meeting an old flame and other characters embracing self-destruction.

Music

Webcast: Watch Polyphonic Spree live on Sunday Aug.…

Polyphonic Spree singer Tim DeLaughter sits with Metro Music Editor Pat Healy for a chat and then the big band performs live. It begins on Sunday at 9:30 pm

Movies

Matthew Weiner on directing 'Are You Here' and…

"Mad Men" creator Matthew Weiner discusses his movie "Are You Here," his history writing comedy and the tiny movie he directed in 1996 you can't see.

NFL

3 things we learned about the Giants in…

The Giants claimed the Snoopy trophy in a battle of MetLife Stadium tenants Friday night. But more importantly, the offense finally showed some life in…

NFL

3 things we learned about the Jets in…

The Jets lost the Snoopy Bowl, 35-24, to the Giants, losing the trophy and local bragging rights.

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

Wellbeing

Asics is giving away free gear around NYC…

Asics wants to see you on the court - and in the stands for the U.S. Open, which begins Monday - by giving away free…

Sex

Big weddings may lead to long-term happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. l A…

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…