Gayle King just signed a deal last Thursday to stay with ViacomCBS for another contract cycle, extending her 10-year run with the network. On Friday, King told her SiriusXM radio listeners, “I still feel that in many ways I’m just getting started.
This announcement came after a flurry of media speculation, which hinted that CNN “had made a bid for King to take over the 9 p.m. slot previously anchored by Chris Cuomo –a move that would put Gayle King in a timeslot once led by Larry King.”
King abstractly addressed the rumors during her show, “You know, there’s lots of speculation about ‘what Gayle’s gonna do, where is she gonna go…Um…’is she being courted?” The answer was yes. You know ‘she has a grandchild, does she wanna move to California?” The answer is no,” she said. I mean, I don’t know why people thought that just because you have a grandchild now all of a sudden you just want to give up your career and go sit in California.”
King noted that “the vibe and the energy was so great over there…The only thing I don’t like about this job are the hours…But you can’t complain about the hours cause the job is what it is. And I’m so proud to be a part of the team, I’m so glad that the negotiations are over.”
King also cited Neeraj Khemlani, president and co-head of CBS News and Stations with Wendy McMahon, as another reason behind her decision, after a town hall where they gave a presentation, saying “the thing that really got to me…Now I looked at that and I thought, ‘God do I wanna be a part of that?’ You know they believe in swinging for the fences, and I’m thinking I wanna play. I wanna play.”
After spending time on Good Morning America as a correspondent, King joined CBS This Morning as a co-host back in 2012, and the show has “been among the most successful runs for the network in the morning hours,” Deadline reports.
“Gayle is one of CBS’ best and most popular news personalities. Her no-nonsense yet compassionate interview style makes every subject fascinating and human,” The Root writes, and during her tenure at CBS, King has “scored several prominent interviews, including an exclusive sit-down with singer R. Kelly after he was arrested and charged with various sex crimes in 2019. King was praised for her poise during the session in which Kelly exploded in rage while denying sexual assault allegations.”
In addition to her morning time slot, King will also be hosting a new series, which will be available on CBS News Streaming service, CBS Reports.
Terms of the deal have not been publicly disclosed, but according to a source familiar with the deal who has not been authorized to comment on the matter, “King earns around $13 million a year – one of the highest salaries in TV news.”