“There are people who love Katie and those who don’t love her and that was a factor,” he said. “But it was the overall dynamics. There was a rock that we couldn’t move and I don’t think it would have mattered who we would have put in there.”
Although Couric will leave the evening news, she might not leave CBS. The CBS Corp. is a powerful force in the syndication business as owners of “Dr. Phil” and “Judge Judy,” and the upcoming departure in May of Oprah Winfrey will leave a huge void in the talk show marketplace. Through CBS-owned stations, the company could give a big head start to a Couric show. Due to the sales calendar, such a show would not likely begin until fall 2012.
A syndication deal with CBS is seen as the only possibility that Couric would continue as evening news anchor on a temporary basis past June, if she were to agree to stay during an extended search for her successor.
Other chief contenders for Couric’s services are NBC and Telepictures. NBC is her old home, but is not considered a big player in the talk show business. It tried and failed to launch a show for Jane Pauley, one of Couric’s predecessors on “Today.” Telepictures is bigger in the marketplace, producing “Ellen” and a new show with Anderson Cooper debuting in the fall, both of which could take potential time slots away from Couric.
Each of the companies has related news divisions where Couric could have some visibility before starting a talk show _ at CBS, NBC or CNN, through Telepictures.
The personality that Couric could be expected to readily display on the talk show circuit could be seen last week in a video posted by aol.com. Couric, who has actively encouraged Americans to get colonoscopies since her husband died of colon cancer, took a humorous look at undergoing her own test. Her doctor jokingly noted that he had found a Batman doll while looking at Couric’s internal organs.