Lauer

Katie Couric: Matt Lauer ‘Ass Pinching’ Remark Was a Joke

Katie-Couric
Katie Couric Charles Sykes/Bravo

Clearing the air. While appearing on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen on Tuesday, May 1, Katie Couric clarified a remark she made where she claimed Matt Lauer’s most annoying habit was pinching her “on the ass a lot.”

The Today anchor, 61, was asked by Cohen about a previous 2012 appearance on the late-night show — where she and the Bravo host played a game called “Plead the Fifth” — which went viral the day sexual misconduct allegations against Lauer made headlines in November 2017.

“I was joking! I was joking! It was a total joke! In fact, when that started circulating, Andy, I was like, ‘Oh my god, I was on Watch What Happens Live.’ It was so antithetical to the nature of our relationship,” the legendary journalist explained. “I thought it would be funny because it was so weird.”

“It was totally a joke, it was totally a joke, but I was really sorry I had made that joke,” Couric continued. “Because people misconstrued it.”

Lauer was fired from NBC after he was accused of sexual misconduct by a coworker in November 2017. Shortly afterward, a production assistant claimed to have had an affair with the former Dateline ABC anchor while he was married.

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Matt Lauer and Katie Couric attend The New York Observer Relaunch Event on April 1, 2014 in New York City. Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

Most recently, Ann Curry told the Washington Post that she had reported Lauer to NBC management after a female employee complained she was “sexually harassed physically” by him in 2012. Lauer broke his silence by releasing a statement on April 27 that read, “I fully acknowledge that I acted inappropriately as a husband, father and principal at NBC. However I want to make it perfectly clear that any allegations or reports of coercive, aggressive or abusive actions on my part, at any time, are absolutely false.”

Couric — who cohosted the Today show with Lauer for nine years — told Wendy Williams on Tuesday, May 1 that the scandal surrounding the disgraced news anchor has been “a very painful time for a lot of people who worked with Matt, knew him, really care about him and who never witnessed — or experienced — any of this behavior that’s obviously being talked about.”

Celebrity News – Us Weekly

Matt Lauer Speaks Out to Defend His Family After Sexual Misconduct Scandal

Matt Lauer has broken his silence five months after he was fired from NBC following allegations of sexual misconduct in the workplace.

“I have made no public comments on the many false stories from anonymous or biased sources that have been reported about me over these past several months. I remained silent in an attempt to protect my family from further embarrassment and to restore a small degree of the privacy they have lost,” Lauer, 60, said in a statement to The Washington Post, which was published on Thursday, April 26.

“But defending my family now requires me to speak up. I fully acknowledge that I acted inappropriately as a husband, father and principal at NBC,” he continued. “However I want to make it perfectly clear that any allegations or reports of coercive, aggressive or abusive actions on my part, at any time, are absolutely false.”

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Matt Lauer on NBC’s ‘Today’ at Rockefeller Plaza in New York City on September 29, 2017. Noam Galai/WireImage

As previously reported, the veteran journalist was terminated from the company in late November 2017 after a colleague accused him of sexual misconduct. Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb tearfully delivered the news live on air on Today and Lauer apologized one day later.

“There are no words to express my sorrow and regret for the pain I have caused others by words and actions. To the people I have hurt, I am truly sorry. As I am writing this I realize the depth of the damage and disappointment I have left behind at home and at NBC. Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed,” he said in a statement to Us Weekly at the time. “I regret that my shame is now shared by the people I cherish dearly.”

As Us exclusively revealed earlier this month, Lauer has since moved out of his family’s home in the Hamptons. He shared the house with his estranged wife, Annette Roque, and their three children — Jack, 16, Romy, 14, and Thijs, 11. In January, he and Roque, 51, quietly began the divorce process.

Celebrity News – Us Weekly

Matt Lauer Is ‘Embarrassed & Ashamed’ As Wife Annette Roque Moves Forward With Divorce

Nearly five months after he was fired from NBC News for alleged sexual misconduct, Matt Lauer and wife Annette Roque are “preparing for divorce,” according to a People report published on Monday.

According to ET Online on Tuesday, the former Today co-anchor has been living in the Hamptons where he is in “bad shape” as he feels “he lost everything important in his life overnight.”

Related: Megyn Kelly Today Staffer Axed!

The source explains:

“Matt cut himself off from the life he knew in Manhattan and has remained for the most part isolated… He looks exhausted. Matt is finally coming to terms with the reality that his marriage is over and he is in bad shape. He feels he lost everything important in his life overnight. He is embarrassed and ashamed.”

It seems unlikely that Lauer and Roque will reconcile, as she has reportedly already met with divorce lawyers.

“There is no chance at this point they will work things out… Matt held on to the idea that Annette might eventually forgive him because she had always stuck by him but now he has no hope.”

The insider adds:

“They are settling all the details… Annette’s friends don’t feel [the split] was overnight. It has been building for years. The truth has finally surfaced. They barely ever speak to each other anymore and only recently tried to constructively discuss the divorce settlement.”

Roque is reportedly gunning for a “very good settlement” to make sure she and her children are set up for life.

“Annette is angry… She feels Matt’s behavior has affected a lot of people and has embarrassed the whole family… Annette plans to receive a very good settlement in this divorce… She wants to make sure she and the children will always be well taken care of.”

Needless to say, Lauer is remorseful for his actions.

“Matt feels terrible and regrets his behavior but his regret isn’t enough right now… It feels like all doors have closed for him.”

A People source on Tuesday adds:

“He wants to make up for anything he has done to hurt people.”

Too little, too late??

[Image via IZZY/WENN.]

PerezHilton

Katie Couric: I Hope That Matt Lauer Has Learned His Lesson

Disgraced television host Matt Lauer has been fired for sexual harassment and Today Show ratings are higher than they’ve been in years.

Now, months later, Katie Couric is speaking out about Lauer and what it was like to work with him and how she insulated herself against harassment.

She also speaks about what she hopes for Matt Lauer’s present and future.

While speaking at TheWrap’s Power Women Breakfast at SXSW, Katie Couric discussed the #MeToo movement and what it’s been like as a woman in her position to experience that for these past months.

And, very naturally, she also speaks about her fallen former colleague, Matt Lauer.

First, she acknowledges that she’s been immersed in this perilous world since long before the #MeToo movement came about.

“I certainly dealt with sexist environments and environments that marginalized and didn’t give women their due, and didn’t treat women as intellectual equals.”

Katie says, however, that the accusations against Matt Lauer and ensuing scandal were much more personal.

“But it’s hit very close to home with Matt Lauer and what happened there.”

Katie elaborated about how listening to #MeToo stories has been illuminating for her.

“It’s been an important experience for me because I never faced this kind of treatment.”

A lot of people — men and women — are discovering for the first time just how perilous the world can be.

Katie knows why predatory men were wary of her.

“I was one of the lucky ones — I think I am harassable and I’m not harassable in that sense, and I think it is because I was in a position of power early in my career.”

To be clear, she’s not saying that there’s something special about her demeanor that makes people unwilling to harass her. Women who are targeted for harassment do not “invite” it.

Rather, she’s saying that securing a position of power as early as she did made men like Matt Lauer treat her as a colleague rather than as a potential target.

Here comes what’s probably her most controversial line.

Katie Couric speaks about what she hopes that Matt Lauer is up to now.

“I hope he’s trying to figure out and understand his behavior and why he did it and why it was so wrong.”

So she hopes that he learned his lesson. Does she imagine that Matt Lauer might have a career after this?

Even in this context, she can’t help but sound like she’s singing his praises.

“We had a wonderful working relationship.”

Perhaps she’s trying to speak of how 

She says that she’s still reeling from the revelations about Matt Lauer.

“It’s shocking, honestly, and disturbing, disorienting, disheartening — all of those d-words.”

She points out that there are others, probably countless men who are still employed, who are predatory wolves in sheep’s clothing.

“But I think, he’s not the only one who behaves in this way …”

That has been made abundantly clear since the autumn of 2017.

“Cultures have existed in the media, and in every arena, where behaviors were tolerated, people looked the other way, it was an accepted way of doing business.”

She says that, regrettably, most people looked the other way.

“I don’t think people paid much attention to it.”

Some accuse Katie Couric of hypocrisy.

She took part in a secret roast of Matt Lauer back in 2008. The content of that roast was said to have mentioned his alleged sexual exploits.

But there’s a difference between someone cheating on his wife (obviously, Annette Roque has finally filed for divorce) and someone preying upon colleagues who don’t feel like they can say no.

And then there was the woman who accused him of locking her in his office, bending her over, and sexually assaulting her — and of only stopping and unlocking the door when she passed out.

It’s probably safe to say that most colleagues who didn’t know the truth chalked up rumors about him as exaggerations and didn’t realize how sinister their colleague’s alleged activities really were.

The Hollywood Gossip

Matt Lauer and Wife Annette Roque Have ‘Started the Divorce Process’

In the aftermath of Matt Lauer’s sexual misconduct scandal, he and wife Annette Roque, 51, are quietly navigating the end of their marriage.

“They’ve started the divorce process,” a source reveals in the new issue of Us Weekly of the pair, who share children Jack, 16, Romy, 14, and Thijs, 11. As his almost 20-year union with the former model comes to a close, the disgraced Today show anchor, 60, is looking forward. “He thinks he can start fresh,” says the insider, “in both his personal and professional life.”

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Matt Lauer and Annette Roque Lauer attend the 38th Annual Hampton Classic Horse Show – Grand Prix Sunday on September 1, 2013 in Bridgehampton, New York. Sonia Moskowitz/Getty Images

While Lauer was seen wearing his wedding ring in the days immediately following his firing from NBC News, he was spotted in early December without the band while buying breakfast in Sag Harbor, New York.

As previously reported, Lauer was fired by the network in November following multiple allegations of sexual misconduct in the workplace. Lauer responded to the allegations in a statement to Us Weekly shortly after. “There are no words to express my sorrow and regret for the pain I have caused others by words and actions,” Lauer he said at the time. “To the people I have hurt, I am truly sorry. As I am writing this I realize the depth of the damage and disappointment I have left behind at home and at NBC. Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed. I regret that my shame is now shared by the people I cherish dearly.”

While Lauer also called “repairing the damage” from the allegations his new “full-time job,” in the statement, he’s already considering his return to the small screen. Notes the source: “He thinks he’ll be back on TV at some point.” 

Celebrity News – Us Weekly

Ann Curry: I’m ‘Not Surprised’ by Matt Lauer Sexual Misconduct Claims

Ann Curry is speaking out about the sexual harassment claims made against her former Today colleague Matt Lauer. Curry was asked about the controversy during a sit-down interview with CBS This Morning on Wednesday, January 17.

“I can tell you that I am not surprised by the allegations,” the 61-year-old veteran journalist admitted.

“Do you believe that Matt Lauer abused his power?” Norah O’Donnell asked.

“Now I’m walking down that road and I’m trying not to hurt people. And I know what it’s like to be publicly humiliated. I never did anything wrong to be publicly humiliated and I don’t want to cause that kind of pain to somebody else,” Curry replied. “But I can say that — because you are asking me a very direct question — I can say that I would be surprised if many women did not understand that there was a climate of verbal harassment that existed. I would be surprised if someone said that they didn’t see that. So, it was verbal sexual harassment.”

As previously reported, Lauer, 60, was fired by NBC in late November after a colleague accused him of sexual misconduct in the workplace. NBC News Chairman Andy Lack sent an email to employees just moments before Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb (who has since replaced Lauer) broke the news on the air.

Matt Lauer on NBC News' ‘Today‘ show
Matt Lauer on NBC News’ ‘Today‘ show Peter Kramer/NBC via Getty Images

Lauer apologized in a statement a day later. “There are no words to express my sorrow and regret for the pain I have caused others by words and actions. To the people I have hurt, I am truly sorry. As I am writing this I realize the depth of the damage and disappointment I have left behind at home and at NBC. Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed,” he said in a statement to Us Weekly. “I regret that my shame is now shared by the people I cherish dearly.”

He continued: “Repairing the damage will take a lot of time and soul searching and I’m committed to beginning that effort. It is now my full time job. The last two days have forced me to take a very hard look at my own troubling flaws. It’s been humbling. I am blessed to be surrounded by the people I love. I thank them for their patience and grace.”

Curry was co-anchor with Lauer from 2011 to 2012. She left the network after a tearful goodbye, with rumors swirling that her tension with Lauer played a role in her exit.

Curry was asked on CBS This Morning if she believes Lauer was partially responsible for her leaving the show. “You know, you should ask someone else,” she said. “I’m to the one to ask about that. Because I don’t know what was all behind it. I do know that it hurt like hell. It wasn’t a fun moment. I’ve learned a great deal about myself. I’ve really, at this point, let it go. I’ve just let it go. And I think that…it’s been years and I want to sort of move on from that. At this point, I’m thinking, ‘Hakuna Matata.’ It’s just sort of over. But no, I think that the real question, in my view, is: What are we going to do with all this anger? And it’s not just, obviously, about where I used to work. It’s not about where you’re now working. But it’s about the problem that’s pervasive across industries, in workplaces across America. And this is actually the issue. And the question is, ultimately: What are we going to do about it? I wonder if we keep focusing only on these individual scandals if we’re going to move off that foot into creating something better in the future.”

Back in November, an insider told Us that it was an “insane” day for Curry when Lauer was terminated. “Everyone has been very supportive of her though and offering kind words. She has been very diplomatic when responding to people and isn’t relishing in it as people might think she should be,” the source told Us at the time. “She has been getting so many phone calls that people can’t even get through.”

Celebrity News – Us Weekly

Former Today Show Staffer Details Affair with Matt Lauer

Addie Zinone, a former Today Show production assistant, has given a detailed account to Variety of her affair with Matt Lauer.

In a lengthy interview with the publication, Zinone says she was 24 when she started sleeping with Lauer in 2000.

The host was recently married at the time to his current wife, Annette Roque.

After serving as an intern at the morning program, Zinone tells Variety she was offered an anchor position back in her home state of West Virginia.

Upon learning she was leaving, Lauer began to come on to Zinone.

In June of 2000, Lauer allegedly wrote the staffer a text that read:

“Hey, I hope you won’t drag me to personnel for saying this, but you look fantastic…

“I don’t know what you have done, or what is going on in your life … but it’s agreeing with you.”

Zinone says she thanked him and asked if the two could meet in order for her to gather “a little advice” from the veteran journalist.

Lauer agreed and met Zinone for lunch.

This is how she described the situation to Variety:

“My intentions were purely professional. I thought this was a way to get real-world constructive advice. What that turned into was an opportunity for him to come on to me.

“It was flattering, confusing, overwhelming. I was nervous. I didn’t know what to do with it. He was clearly trying to guide the conversation.

“He was there to hit on me and manipulate the situation, and I fell for it.

“Here’s how I should have known what I was getting myself into. When we left, he told me: ‘You leave first, and I’ll leave after.’

“In no lunch I’d ever had at Today had anyone suggested we leave separately, as if something was up.”

Confused over what was going on and feeling uneasy about how Lauer acted toward her, Zinone says she asked the host to get together for a discussion.

He requested the pair meet in his dressing room above studio 1A.

According to her account, she reminded him he was married, but…

“He opens the door. There you go. It crossed the line. It was a consensual encounter. It happened in his dressing room above studio 1A, which was empty in the afternoons.

“He got in his car and I had to go back to work, and now my life had completely changed.”

Lauer, of course, was fired late last month due to accusations of sexual misconduct and harassment.

Follow-up stories claimed he sent co-workers sex toys, demanded sexual favors of underlings and even raped an employee in his office.

In this case, Zinone acknowledges the relationship was consensual and that the two “met several [more] times” after this initial sexual encounter.

There was even one time, she claims, that Lauer used a button under his desk to lock his office door because he wanted them to have sex right then and there.

“It was embarrassing, because his secretary was sitting outside,” she says, adding:

“He wanted to do stuff. I was like, ‘No. I’m so in over my head. I’m not a performance artist.'”

The last time that Zinone says she saw Lauer was at the 2000 Democratic National Convention in California, when he supposedly told her to meet him in a nearby bathroom, where they proceeded to have “an encounter.”

Of the sexual variety, we assume.

She eventually quit her anchor job and joined the Army.

The former PA concludes that her situation was consensual, yes, but she still felt like a victim because she felt he had abused his power.

“He went after the most vulnerable and the least powerful – and those were the production assistants and the interns,” she told Variety.

“I’m putting my name and face out there to squash any doubts about the allegations from other women against Matt Lauer.

“I’m validating their stories because some of our experiences are similar. I want these women to know that I believe them, I want to help empower them and collectively we have a voice to change things.

“I have a 7-year-old daughter. I want to do everything I can to assure this doesn’t happen to her.”

Last we heard, the status of Lauer’s marriage was up in the air.

The Hollywood Gossip

Matt Lauer Will Not Receive a Payout From NBC: Report

Matt Lauer will not receive a payout after being fired by NBC amid allegations of sexual harassment, CNNMoney reports.

Though Lauer’s contract called for him to be paid tens of millions of dollars, the network doesn’t expect to pay it now that he’s been fired, a senior NBC source told the outlet. Lauer “will not be paid past his last day of work,” the source said on Friday, December 1.

According to a story published in the New York Post on Thursday, the lawyers of the former morning talk show host, 59, have been angling to get him a payout. Their headline read “Lauer’s lawyers trying to get him $ 30M payout after firing.”

The expected monetary compensation was based on the fact that Lauer was paid around $ 20 million a year to cohost the Today show. Lauer’s contract was said to expire in late 2018, but the Post indicated that it stretched through the first half of 2019, ultimately leading to the $ 30 million figure.

The NBC source did not dispute that Lauer’s attorneys might designate a plan for get him paid, but said the network will not agree to any sort of payout.

As previously reported, Lauer was fired by NBC News chairman Andrew Lack late Tuesday, November 28, after a female colleague of the journalist claimed he engaged in “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.”

He broke his silence one day after being fired: “There are no words to express my sorrow and regret for the pain I have caused others by words and actions. To the people I have hurt, I am truly sorry,” he said in a statement to Us Weekly. “As I am writing this I realize the depth of the damage and disappointment I have left behind at home and at NBC. Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed.”

Celebrity News – Us Weekly

‘It’s Been Humbling.’ Matt Lauer Breaks Silence After Sexual Misconduct Allegations

Matt Lauer has broken his silence after sexual misconduct allegations led to his firing from NBC’s Today show.

Lauer’s former cohost Savannah Guthrie read Lauer’s statement at the top of Thursday morning’s show. In the statement, Lauer’s first since the news broke, the former anchor apologizes for his actions, but maintains that some accounts are “untrue” or “mischaracterize” his behavior.

The full statement reads:

There are no words to express my sorrow and regret for the pain I have caused others by words and actions. To the people I have hurt, I am truly sorry. As I am writing this, I realize the depth of the damage and disappointment I have left behind at home and at NBC. Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized, but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed. I regret that my shame is now shared by the people I cherish dearly. Repairing the damage will take a lot of time and soul searching and I’m committed to beginning that effort. It is now my full time job. The last two days have forced me to take a very hard look at my own troubling flaws. It’s been humbling. I am blessed to be surrounded by people I love. I thank them for their patience and grace.

NBC officially fired Lauer due to inappropriate conduct toward a fellow NBC employee dating back to the 2014 Sochi Olympic games. A Variety story, citing anonymous sources, detailed further sexual assault allegations against the television star, and NBC said it had “reason to believe [his behavior at the Olympics] may not have been an isolated incident.”


TIME