Sam Champion is leaving ABC's "Good Morning America" partly because he and his hubby want to start a family and partly because of his thirst to become a honcho ... ABC sources tell TMZ.
Our sources ... who are extremely familiar with the situation ... say Sam has been chronically unhappy at GMA. We're told he wanted his own show -- badly-- but ABC execs weren't biting.
So, Sam jumped to the Weather Channel (which is co-owned by NBC), where he will anchor the network's new flagship morning show and also serve as managing editor.
Our sources say Sam wanted to be the one who replaced Larry King at CNN and he was shocked when he wasn't tapped. As one source put it, "Sam loves power, and becoming managing editor (of the Weather Channel) gives him that."
Oh, by the way, our NBC sources say Al Roker -- NOT a Sam fan -- is "pissed" his Weather Channel show will be Sam's lead-in.
Another reason Sam bailed from GMA is that he and his husband want kids and the hubby refuses to leave Florida (GMA is in NYC).
We're told Sam will be spending about half his time in Miami so the kids will know his face in person and not just on the tube. As for moolah, we're told its a lateral move. Our sources say Sam was pulling in around $2.5 mil at GMA and he'll be making around the same at the Weather Channel.
$2.5 mil for weather ... now THAT'S making it rain!!!
We're Selling Out to the Kardashians
10/21/2013 7:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Screw Obamacare or the murderers that broke out of prison in Florida, ABC News just sent out an email blast to the media with the most important news of the day -- IT'S KIM KARDASHIAN'S BIRTHDAY!!!
Seriously, ABC News just fired off a news release with the subject line, "Kim Kardashian Turns 33."
Wait, before we go any further .... ABC included a note at the top of the email warning, "News organizations using excerpts of this reporting should credit/link to ABC News."
But ABC didn't launch the press release JUST to tell us information widely available on the interweb -- they also made sure we knew, "In honor of the reality star’s 33rd birthday, we are dedicating our entertainment section to all things Kim Kardashian."
The email concludes, "Don’t forget to wish her a happy birthday!"
Oh, we won't!!!
Keep up the good work ABC News -- delivering the news the people NEED to know.
Now, excuse us ... we have an exclusive Kevin Federline story to write.
'Dancing With the Stars'
Disney Witch Hunt!
9/1/2013 2:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Disney is none too pleased that TMZ got the cast list of "Dancing With the Stars," because we've learned the head of security has launched an investigation to find the leak.
The Mouse House apparently was not amused when we told you Valerie Harper, Leah Remini, Snooki, Elizabeth Berkley, Amber Riley and others will be appearing in the upcoming season. We're told security will start interviewing staffers tomorrow to find the alleged mole.
So we're guessing this won't make Mickey's parents happy ... we found out Tristin McMannis will be Valerie's partner. What's more ... we're told Valerie -- who has been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer but is in remission -- is rehearsing like a champ and is getting no special breaks.
Good luck on the hunt ... sons of Walt.
'Dancing with the Stars'
Despite Terminal Brain Cancer
8/28/2013 10:02 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Valerie Harper -- whom doctors gave three months to live back in March due to her terminal brain cancer -- hasn't just defied medicine by staying alive ... she's signed on to "Dancing with the Stars."
As we reported, 74-year-old Harper -- famous for playing the role of Rhoda on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" -- announced she had been diagnosed with leptomeningeal carcinomatosis, a rare form of cancer in which cancer cells spread into the membrane surrounding the brain.
Doctors gave her roughly until June to live ... but it's already August, and we've learned she's doing so well she is set to appear on the upcoming season of "Dancing," an extremely physically-demanding reality show.
We're told Valerie and her partner Tristan have already been practicing for two days, and she's surprisingly good. Our sources say she's completely self-sufficient and doesn't need any special assistance ... at least so far.
TMZ broke the story ... Leah Remini will also be on the next season, as well as Snooki, Elizabeth Berkley, Amber Riley from "Glee," and Christina Milian.
I'm 'Dancing with the Stars'
8/28/2013 8:49 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Leah Remini is going from Dianetics to disco ... TMZ has learned, the famous ex-Scientologist will appear in the upcoming season of "Dancing with the Stars" ... and Snooki will be making her post-pregnancy debut along with her.
Sources close to production tell us, the former "King of Queens" actress is on the show.
As we reported, Remini recently underwent a very public split from the Church of Scientology after raising questions about the disappearance of church leader David Miscavige's wife Shelly.
Remini filed a missing persons report regarding Shelly's disappearance in July, demanding answers, and the Church was NOT pleased ... ripping the actress for her wanton betrayal.
FYI, police claim they made contact with Shelly in the wake of Remini's report and determined Remini's concerns were "unfounded." Eerie.
In addition to Remini and Snooki, our sources say Elizabeth Berkley, Amber Riley from "Glee," and Christina Milian will also be on the show.
7/9/2013 4:55 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Joy Behar isn't the only one jumping ship on "The View" ... Elisabeth Hasselbeck is also bailing on ABC's daytime talk show.
Fox just released a statement, saying Hasselbeck will be replacing Gretchen Carlson on "Fox & Friends." A rep for ABC said Hasselbeck's last day on "The View" will be Wednesday.
Barbara Walters also released a statement, saying, "We have had 10 wonderful years with Elisabeth, and she will now be swimming in new waters. We will miss her and wish her everything good."
It's unclear who will replace Hasselbeck on the show ... but there are rumors Brooke Shields is being tapped for the job.
Elisabeth is expected to join "Fox & Friends" in September. As for Carlson ... you haven't seen the last of her on Fox News -- she's getting her own daytime show starting in the fall.
'Suburgatory' Star Jane Levy
Divorcing After 7-Month
5/5/2013 6:55 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
"Suburgatory" star Jane Levy plays a moody teen on TV, but in real life she's about to be a 23-year-old divorcee ... ending a marriage that lasted all of 7 months -- and no one seemed to know about.
Jane -- who shot to fame in the last two years with her hit show on ABC -- filed for divorce from actor Jaime Freitas on April 16, citing irreconcilable differences.
They married in March 2011 and were separated by October of that year ... they just didn't pull the trigger on a divorce. We're told the breakup was amicable.
Levy's filing indicates she doesn't want to pay spousal support to Freitas -- whose career isn't quite at her level. We're not familiar with a lot of his stuff ... then again, we don't watch a lot of foreign flicks.
Funny thing is ... they kept the marriage pretty quiet, as there's virtually nothing out there about the couple.
Except for this video they made together back in 2010 ... which is pretty weird.
'Good Morning America'
4/19/2012 11:25 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
For the first time in 16 years, ABC's "Good Morning America" edged out NBC's "Today" in the morning show ratings last week -- and this morning, ABC News rubbed it in NBC's face ... throwing a champagne-popping victory party.
All the big swinging chicks at ABC were present ... including Robin Roberts, Diane Sawyer, and Lara Spencer -- in addition to ABC News President Ben Sherwood, Senior EP Tom Cibrowski, former "GMA" host Charlie Gibson, George Stephanopoulos, Sam Champion ... pretty much the whole crew.
We're told Robin Roberts toasted the entire "GMA" team, saying, "We're the face of it, but it's all you. Everyone in this building is a team."
We're guessing the "Today" staff got bagels.
Loses Custody of Daughter
5/16/2011 11:53 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
The woman who admitted on national television that she injected Botox into her 8-year-old daughter ... has now lost custody of the girl.
Child Protective Services in San Francisco launched an investigation last week after Kerry Campbell went on "Good Morning America" and told the world she gave her daughter Britney the anti-wrinkle injections herself ... to help her compete in beauty pageants.
According to ABC News, Britney has been removed from the home by CPS and taken into their custody while an investigation is conducted.
Britney is reportedly "doing well."
Strip Club Opening
4/24/2009 10:40 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
In their pursuit of "credible" and "informative" news stories, KABC in Los Angeles decided to assign one of their most attractive reporters to do some hard-hitting journalism last night -- at the re-opening of L.A. strip joint, The Body Shop. No, they didn't make their reporter perform.
But the story wasn't just a cheap attempt to attract viewers by showing trashy chicks wearing practically nothing (insert sarcasm here), it was a story about the economic hardships of our times -- anyone with a job is considered lucky.
Thankfully, the "legitimate" news informed us about one all important fact: If you can swing around a pole in a g-string, the place is hiring.
ABC Talking Heads:
Owen a Laughing Matter?
9/4/2007 4:08 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
ABC "World News Now" anchors Ryan Owens and Taina Hernandez had a hard time keeping straight faces while reporting the alleged suicide attempt of comic actor Owen Wilson. The on air duo couldn't stop laughing while announcing Wilson's dramatic ordeal.
What had the two chuckleheads so giggly? It turns out that Owens and Hernandez have the maturity of 9-year-olds, and thought that the last name of Wilson's uncle -- Hoe -- was hilarious.
The pair offered an on air apology ... two days later.