According to six sources famous in a Daily Beast report on Thursday, Rachel Maddow is “seriously considering” leaving MSNBC.
Maddow’s contract with MSNBC expires early subsequent 12 months, and she or he has floated the thought of beginning and rising her personal impartial media firm.
A community determines a star TV host’s worth by the potential of their seemingly successor. Fox News’ profitable transition from Bill O’Reilly to Tucker Carlson was an anomaly. Look at TV hosts like beginning quarterbacks. Fox’s passage from O’Reilly to Carlson was the Packers going from Brett Favre to Aaron Rodgers. It’s luck. If Fox News didn’t have Tucker Carlson ready, O’Reilly’s departure would have broken FNC’s primetime rankings.
Meanwhile, Rachel Maddow to MSNBC’s bench is the Patriots going from Tom Brady to Cam Newton and Jarrett Stidham. Unless they’re hiding, MSNBC doesn’t have its Tucker Carlson ready on the bench. To MSNBC, Maddow is irreplaceable.
Networks choose primetime hosts by their skill to lift the channel’s total base viewers. In July, MSNBC’s rankings jumped from 1.4 million to 2.3 million at 9 pm, when Maddow got here on. Nearly 1,000,000 extra folks watched Maddow than Chris Haynes, the host of the present earlier than hers. Once Maddow signed off at 10, the rankings fell as soon as once more to 1.5 million. This states, in July, MSNBC’s base viewers in primetime was round 1.5 million, and Maddow was price one other million viewers
If MSNBC can’t retain Maddow, its record of in-house substitute candidates is brief. And none of them would preserve her attain.
Neither Hayes nor Lawrence O’Donnell has the enchantment to copy Maddow’s success. What’s extra, NBC wouldn’t stand for the promotion of an on-air white male. MSNBC is excessive on Nicolle Wallace — the community even mentioned transferring her to Meet the Price at the expense of Chuck Todd — however her type doesn’t translate to primetime. If Maddow departs, I’d search for MSNBC to maneuver Joy Reid, TV’s most famous race-baiter, to conventional primetime hours (8 to 11 pm ).
MSNBC wants Maddow greater than Maddow wants MSNBC. In reality, Maddow doesn’t want a TV community in any respect. Recent developments counsel that Maddow might make more cash long-term by proudly owning her personal content material through licensing offers, gross sales, and partnerships.
Joe Rogan agreed to a $100 million licensing take care of Spotify in 2020. This 12 months, Spotify inked an analogous settlement with Call Her Daddy host Alex Cooper for 3 years, $60 million. Presumably, Maddow might make effectively over eight figures a 12 months along with her personal digital challenge. And whereas transferring away from primetime would value Maddow in uncooked viewership numbers, her attain would stay intact.
Digital media hosts Ben Shapiro, Dan Bongino, and Steven Crowder have extra affect over their listeners and viewers than most TV hosts. Podcasts and digital exhibits attain fewer shoppers than primetime cable information, however their audiences are youthful, extra responsive and extra engaged, making such exhibits each profitable in monetization
Finally, Maddow can depart TV, begin her personal firm, and add extra life to her days. Maddow’s nightly program airs from 9 pm to 10 pm. That requires writing, preparation, and dialogue starting early in the day. Maddow admitted in an interview with the New York Times final 12 months that, between writing a e-book and internet hosting her present, she barely has any time to herself.
Digital media has persistently closed the hole with linear TV over the previous 5 years. Outside of overpaying her, MSNBC has few playing cards to play in negotiations with Maddow.
Knowing this, Maddow and her brokers might search a contract that mirrors Bill O’Reilly’s last take care of Fox News, a deal price $100 million over 4 years. MSNBC president Rashida Jones couldn’t scoff at that demand.