Media has had a field day with coverage of the shock departure by Lisa Wilkinson from Today to The Project.
Here’s a summary of some of the key points reported, but note most come without on-the-record sources, so make up your own mind:
- Wilkinson joins TEN from January 2018.
- Wilkinson to appear two weeknights on The Project, plus hosting Sunday edition.
- Wilkinson to front other TEN programming, including US interviews.
- Wilkinson disappointed not to have been allowed to say goodbye to Today viewers.
- Nine maintains Today salary would have had parity with Karl Stefanovic, but his other roles including 60 Minutes and This Time Next Year entail more.
- Wilkinson was on just over $1m and was offered another $50,000. Other reports claim offer was upped to $1.8m.
- 10 producer roles would have had to go for Nine to meet salary demands.
- Nine called her bluff over contract demands. 45 minutes later she signed with TEN.
- Nine cancelled her access swipe shortly after negotiations broke down.
- CBS backed TEN’s hiring of Wilkinson, estimated at anywhere between $750,000 – $2m.
- Audience research indicated viewers more supportive of Wilkinson than Stefanovic, empowering her negotiations through manager Nick Fordham.
- Wilkinson’s deal with Huffington Post prevented her from contributing to Nine digital platforms.
- Nine concerned over her ads sponsoring garlic supplements, recently criticised by Media Watch.