After 10 years with The Today Show, co-host Lisa Wilkinson has announced that she is leaving the show, effective immediately.
In a social media post on Monday night, Wilkinson wrote, “I have some news. I’m sad to say that today was my last day on The Today Show.”
Accompanying her social media post was a statement from Channel Nine confirming the news.
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Wilkinson thanked her co-hosts and colleagues by name and ended by thanking The Today Show audience for their continued support.
Channel Nine said they were “disappointed” to find themselves in this situation and have not announced a new co-host.
— Lisa Wilkinson (@Lisa_Wilkinson) October 16, 2017
Just this week, it was reported by Annette Sharpe in the Daily Telegraph that Wilkinson was being paid only half of what her co-host, Karl Stefanovic, takes home every year.
In 2015, The Australian reported Karl Stefanovic is “actually taking home about $2.5m annually” on a three year contract, while Wilkinson takes home less than half of that, signing on – in January 2016 – for a reported $1 million a year.
In May, when Wilkinson herself was pressed on the claims in an interview with Charlie Pickering on The Weekly, she denied she had any knowledge of Stefanovic’s pay.
"It’s been widely reported that Karl is paid significantly more than you to host The Today Show. Why do you think that is?” he asked.
“And you believe everything you read?” Wilkinson said, before telling the program she has "no idea what Karl's on", just "as he has no idea was [she] is on".
“I can put my hand on my heart and say I have no idea what Karl is paid, and he has no idea what I’m paid
“Besides, I do it out of love, anyway.”
Presumably though, there are those at the network who do know what both stars are paid and it's believed this information has leaked, pointing to a significant discrepancy between the two co-hosts.
In a year where Stefanovic's private life has become fodder for public conversation and reportedly had a negative impact on the show's ratings against rival Sunrise, his co-host has been a steady hand steering the Today how ship.
Wilkinson will be sadly missed.
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