Friday, April 12, 2024

MSNBC Ending Lawrence O’Donnell “The Last Word” Show Despite Top Ratings (Exclusive)

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today’s news about O’Donnell and MSNBC

I can confirm that MSNBC is ending the top rated “The Last Word” with Lawrence O’Donnell, the popular show that follows Rachel Maddow at 10pm. O’Donnell’s contract is up shortly, and the network has not made any overtures about keeping him on.

There is a fear that despite Maddow’s dogged liberalism, MSNBC is taking a turn to the right. O’Donnell would not fit into that model. But they’ve installed Fox News’s Greta van Susteren at 6pm, and more changes are coming. (This follows the disaster with Tamron Hall and the coming of Megyn Kelly from Fox News, too.)

It seems just like MSNBC to abruptly kill their own success. They’re finally beating CNN and Fox, so why not reverse course? Crazy. O’Donnell’s ratings have never been higher.

“The Last Word” has been on since 2011, and O’Donnell has been with MSNBC since it began. If CNN were smart, they’d pick him up right away. He’s one of the smartest guys in the room, and a pleasure to watch. Among his credits are writing for and consulting on “The West Wing.”

UPDATE

My NBC sources say that O’Donnell’s tireless criticism of Donald Trump is the cause of the trouble. O’Donnell calls Trump a liar on TV almost ever night. Says my observer: “Phil Griffin fought back Trump’s demands to Comcast chief Steve Burke that O’Donnell get fired for years. But now he’s president and now it’s Andy Lack’s decision and Andy has never run a single promo for O’Donnell and he wants access to Trump for Lester Holt interview and more.”
Morale at NBC News has been low for some time. My source says: “This version of NBC news would have handed the Pentagon papers back to the Pentagon. The New York Times and Washington Post remain our best hope.”

Maybe Bill O’Reilly will take his place. Maybe pigs will fly.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedmanhttps://www.showbiz411.com
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.
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