EXCLUSIVE: Another key member of the Katie Couric-Jeff Zucker team from the golden era of Today is joining them on Couric’s upcoming syndicated talk show. No, it’s not Matt Lauer, who recently re-upped his deal at the NBC morning show. Michael Bass, who served as executive producer Jeff Zucker’s No.2 on Today and as interim executive producer on the NBC program when Zucker left to become NBC Entertainment president, has closed a deal to serve as co-executive producer on Katie, Couric’s daytime syndicated talk show, which launches Sept. 10.
Bass, who I hear has been working behind the scenes on the Disney-ABC Domestic TV-distributed Katie for a month or two, joins fellow co-executive producer Kathy Samuels. Both will report to Jeff Zucker and help him run the show. That is a familiar position for WME-repped Bass who worked as Zucker’s deputy on Today for five years and then briefly served as acting executive producer but left the show in 2001 when he was passed over for the EP job went to Jonathan Wald. He did a stint as Senior executive producer of CBS’ Early Show and CBS Morning News before reuniting with Zucker in 2008 when then-NBC Universal CEO Zucker hired him as SVP strategic initiatives.