Fri. Sep 25th, 2020

Once Beloved By Americans, ‘Today Show’ Host Matt Lauer’s Reputation Takes Yet Another Beating, Intern Says He Was Not Nice, Highlight Hollywood News

When it rain it pours, is an old Southern saying, and also, when you are at your height of fame, we all know that the media and fans will look for anything to trip you up and drag you back to the level they want you. However, is Matt Lauer the victim of bad luck, of jealousy, or like many who know him, a mean, overbearing bully, who pushed Ann Curry out of her NBC gig and now adding fuel to the fire of Matt’s downgraded reputation, a former NBC intern tweeted that Lauer was not very nice at all to employees.  Barbara Stanwyck once told me, to always be nice to everyone you work with, unless they deserve your disdain, and to “always be nice to the little people, because without them, you wouldn’t be where you are today.” She didn’t meant that to sound snobbish, and Matt Lauer should have learned that advice as well.
That’s not to say Matt Lauer treated his former intern, Mark Zinni, badly — there’s two sides to every story — however the beleaguered “Today” show co-host offered an apology on Twitter to Zinni, now an anchor and reporter at Fox’s Cleveland affiliate station, after he retweeted a follower who quoted him as saying Lauer was “not so nice.” Another quote: “I was just a young kid with a bright future ahead of me.”



Lauer’s response, from Tuesday: “huh? Always tried to be nice Mark. Sorry you didn’t think so. Hope you’re doing well.”   On Thursday, the social media-loving Zinni was firing off a torrent of comments and replies regarding his Lauer tweet-versation, telling people to “be careful what you say on twitter, ha!” and stating: “For the record, i[Sic] wasn’t ‘disgruntled’ … I had a great time in ’97!”



Lauer, meanwhile, is mired in all sorts of drama over his future on the NBC morning show, which has slipped in the ratings and fallen to No. 2 behind Good Morning America since Ann Curry was pushed out of the show last summer. Although Lauer has said the circumstances of Curry’s exit were mishandled, the public perception is that he was key in the decision to let her go.



As his once stellar  reputation takes more hits, many media observers wonder how long Lauer, whose contract runs through 2014, will remain in the co-anchor’s chair alongside Curry replacement Savannah Guthrie. On Wednesday, NBC executives and sources close to Anderson Cooper denied reports that the CNN anchor had been approached about Lauer’s job.



Later Thursday, Zinni defended his Twitter TMI in a post on, writing: “Darren Sweeney, an executive producer at FOX 8, asked about my experience with Matt Lauer. If you know me, you probably know that I don’t take myself too seriously. So, my answer was more of a joke about being young and naive during my time at Today, but I added that he wasn’t nice to me. I didn’t slam the guy, I just made an honest comment.”



Added Zinni: “Twitter is a great resource for everyone because it’s instant and, thankfully, shorter than a phone call. Bottom line, I was shocked Matt Lauer even bothered with me and, really, he remembers me? I’m flattered.”

Though Lauer and NBC deny he’s being replaced. The truth is, Lauer’s reputation has taken so many hits, most of them self-inflicted, and he can’t be expected to remain in his “Today” gig much longer, if this continues.  Who happens to be getting the last laugh? Miss Ann Curry!
Written By: Tommy Lightfoot Garrett
Photographs are Courtesy:  NBC
Follow us on Twitter @HighlightHwd or @LightfootinHwd