Report: Jeff Zucker Offered Rachel Maddow $20 Million Annually to Become the Face of CNN+

By Brad Pareso 

Talk to people at Warner Bros. or HBO these days and invariably they’ll ask: So… what are you hearing from Discovery? And vice versa: What’s the buzz at Warners? There’s a reason for that, of course. As AT&T’s $43 billion punt of WarnerMedia to Discovery sails toward a possible closing date in mid-2022, everyone—top to bottom, but especially at the top—is looking for an angle. (Puck News)

A report surfaced late last week saying that CNN’s Jeff Zucker recently offered MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow around $20 million a year to anchor the soon-to-launch CNN+ streaming service. The news was reported by Puck News’ Matthew Belloni, citing a source. (TVNewser)

In turn, this offer from a rival network reportedly caused NBC Universal to enter panic mode, as they hurried to close a deal with Maddow, offering more money and a more flexible workload in order to retain their biggest star. The anchor decided to remain at MSNBC, finally reaching an agreement with the network in August to sign a new multi-year contract. (Mediaite)