Tags: jon stewart | meet the press

Jon Stewart 'Meet the Press' Hosting Gig Floated, but Ultimately Denied

By    |   Thursday, 09 October 2014 01:17 PM

Jon Stewart turned down an offer to host "Meet the Press" on NBC, New York magazine reported Wednesday.

Three senior television sources with knowledge of the talks said that NBC News president Deborah Turness held negotiations with Stewart before booting David Gregory this summer and replacing him with current host Chuck Todd.

This Sunday marks the one-month anniversary of Todd's hosting of "Meet the Press," which saw a ratings bump his opening week but has now settled back in third place behind its competitors, ABC's "This Week" and CBS' "Face the Nation."

Considering the frustrating slide back into third, NBC execs might be wishing they'd secured the "Daily Show" host for the role. It could have been a nice complement to its April hiring of Comedy Central's other funny newsman, Stephen Colbert, who will replace David Letterman upon his upcoming retirement.

No matter the potential, however, it sounds like NBC didn't stand a chance. One source said the network was prepared to offer Stewart "anything" to get him on board, so he likely declined for non-monetary reasons.

One theory goes that Stewart's intuition told him his young audience wouldn't follow him to an early morning timeslot on the weekend — much less a show without jokes. Todd himself has previously told reporters that the Sunday show struggles to attract young folks, leaving the network with the question: "Are they rejecting the brand or are they just not getting up?"

The Washington Post said a Stewart-helmed "Meet the Press" could have been a disaster. 

"If ever Stewart attempted to flex his satirical muscles on the show, he would have faced a troop of media critics coming down on him for wrecking this storied news program. How fun would that have been?" it wrote.

The answer, of course, is "lots."

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Jon Stewart turned down an offer to host "Meet the Press" on NBC, New York magazine reported Wednesday.
jon stewart, meet the press
Thursday, 09 October 2014 01:17 PM
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