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Matt Lauer

I'll Stay at 'Today' ...

If You Pay Me a Fortune

2/10/2012 5:30 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

0209_matt_lauer_tmz_EX
Matt Lauer has softened his position about leaving "Today" in December at the end of his contract -- that is, if NBC antes up a record amount of money.

Sources connected to NBC tell TMZ ... Lauer was done with "Today" and wanted out -- but the word at the network is he will now re-sign if NBC ponies up way more than the $17 mil he's currently making.

We're told negotiations are now ongoing -- but if NBC agrees ... Lauer could score as much as $30 MILLION a year.

As for why the change of heart -- there are two schools of thought according to network sources. Some say Lauer changed his mind when network execs made it clear they were extremely interested in tapping Ryan Seacrest as Matt's replacement -- in other words, he got a little jealous.

But there's another school of thought -- that Lauer has wanted to re-sign all along and just played the "I'm leaving" card to score a bigger pay day.

As for whether Lauer is worth $30 mil ... to put it in context, "Today" makes roughly $450 million a year for the network ... more than any other show on NBC.

So we gotta ask ...

180 COMMENTS

No Avatar
46.

eddie    

can you say "overpaid"?

955 days ago
47.

parlayer    

nobody watches that network. it will get a obama bail outl he's a dem.

955 days ago
48.

Firefly    

I won't watch the Today show because of this clown. Fire him and hire someone that likes what they are doing and will do it for 1/8 that amount. Celebrities are not special, They don't even do anything special. They should all get the same rate - minimum wage. It's time to bring all these self entitled fools back down to earth and bring there astronamical wages down too. Why pay them so much that they think they are above us? Why pay them so much while all we can do is look at all their expensive possessions while they gloat. And to make it even more fun they even show us what our money has bought them. Like the Kardashians. So yeah I would get rid of Lauer because:


NBC's finest hour will be
Getting rid of Lauer.

955 days ago
49.

Paul B.    

Matt Lauer is worth maybe $300,000, maybe. I like him but he is very bland and could be easily replaced by any local small-market news anchor.

955 days ago
50.

Kari    

LET HIM GO!!! Time for a new, fresh face on the show. And if $17 million isn't enough for someone in a year, then they deserve to be let go.

955 days ago
51.

moe l.    

He's not worth 30 cents! What a moron and if NBC pays him that much, they're dumber than a moron!

955 days ago
52.

Jamie    

This guy is pathetic. Majority of America is F'N BROKE! I work my butt off everyday and will never see a quarter of a million let alone 30! Hes too sad for words and a waste of time.

955 days ago
53.

JiLL1    

$30M for what ? reading from a telepromper? Please

955 days ago
54.

nan    

Bryant Gumbal thought he was going on to bigger and better things ..so did Katie Couric..
People put the station on out of habit..not because they are such crackerjack news people..

955 days ago
55.

Jenn    

Matt Lauer is basically a pharma whore. Look at how the Today show covered the Leroy girls compared to the Dr. Drew show. If I were him I'd want more money to he a paid pharma whore. Then again you couldn't pay me enough to be a pharma whore. He and that Snyderman are awful.

955 days ago
56.

Zutopia    

And what is so special about this idiot? He asks the most stupid questions you could possibly imagine. Not appealing at all, sorry Matt, time for you fade off into the sunset (oh wait, you already have!).

955 days ago
57.

Pat    

The real question is whether the "Today" show is worth 450 million. Earlier in its history, watching "Today" was like reading the NY Times. Now it's like reading the NY Post...playing to the lowest denominator and forsaking important news for gossip and scandal. Witnessing the downward spiral of this once highly regarded source of world news is tragic. If Matt Lauer wants to sell his soul, he has the right to set the price.

955 days ago
58.

Jenn    

#53 waxon said it right. Matt is quite narcissistic. I watched him squirm as he grilled one doctor (Wakefield) and it was obvious that he the whole thing was frame up but Matt just went after him anyways. Why? Because he's paid by his pharma sponsors to he a pharma whore. The more up to date story on the Leroy girls is that they may have PANDAS/PANS. But you won't hear that from the Today show. What you'll hear about is that "conversion" bull$f!T. How can he look in the mirror and feel good about himself?

955 days ago
59.

soulofanangel    

-----------------------------------------------------------
Just goes to show you, MONEY WHORES comes in all sizes, shapes, genders, with hair or BALDING, big butts or not.
-----------------------------------------------------------

955 days ago
60.

greatneck    

Please, pay him to leave, ****y, boring, played out...They need to freshen up the staff, next, weatherboreman...You know, the oreo......

955 days ago
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