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Will NBC News Add a Fifth Hour of Today?


The Today brand might be expanding even further. According to Variety's exclusive report, NBC News has considered adding a fifth hour to Today on weekdays.

NBC News president Noah Oppenheim said:

We like serving our audience on any given day of the week. There’s enough going on to fill 24 hours of television.

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When would the extra hour air? Likely no earlier than the current block of Today programming.

Oppenheim added as a caveat:

There are no imminent plans for it. I don’t want to overstate the likelihood of it happening.

Scott Carlin, executive vice president of global media and entertainment at TV industry consultant Magid, offered an interesting take, noted Variety:

At a time when news holds more viewers’ interest, there is reason to eliminate the costs inherent in syndicating a daytime program or investing in more talent for a talk show. The news divisions are already geared up to fill time.. 'The costs of expanding by an hour are really insignificant,' he says. Broadcast executives are saying, "'We’ve got the infrastructure. We have all these talented people. The news cycle doesn’t end at 9 a.m. Why don’t we extend it out?"' Extensions of venerable morning shows are also often easier to sell to advertisers, who understand the morning-show brands much more readily than they might a new concept.