Matt Lauer Is Reportedly Still Planning His Comeback
After being accused of sexual harassment and assault by multiple women last year, Matt Lauer still apparently thinks he’ll be able to return to television.
Page Six is out with a new report this week about Lauer being spotted out at a New York City restaurant he used to frequent. According to this report, Lauer ran into some fans and told them they could expect him back on TV soon.
“I’ve been busy being a dad. But don’t worry, I’ll be back on TV,” Lauer reportedly told a group of women after they said they missed him.
We’ve been hearing about Lauer’s reported plans for a comeback for months now. As early as March, Entertainment Tonight reported that Lauer thought he could recover from the scandal if he just waited a long enough period of time.
“Matt seems to be under the impression that if he waits this news cycle out, this will go away and he can have a comeback,” a source said. “He has seen a lot of people come back and hopes he will too.”
This article said that Lauer had discussed the idea of a “redemption tour” of sorts, during which he would make some kind of public apology. In Touch had previously reported that Lauer might actually give a tell-all interview to Today, though the idea of NBC allowing him back on again after everything that happened seems incredibly unlikely.
Still, after spending months isolated in the Hamptons, Lauer began to return to his old Manhattan eateries in April, with Page Six reporting at the time that he was testing the waters for his return. The article noted, “With his marriage to Annette Roque now over, he’s ready to restart his life, pals say.”
Earlier this year, there was one report that said Lauer might attempt to revive his career by becoming a film producer, but this latest comment from him suggests that’s not the case and he actually hopes to end up back in front of the camera.
But that would require the public, and members of the television industry, to be receptive of his return, which at this point does not seem very probable. After all, the allegations against Lauer were very serious. He was accused of sexually harassing women who worked for him at NBC News, with one woman telling The New York Times that Lauer sexually assaulted her until she passed out and had to be taken to a nurse.
At the time, Lauer issued a contrite apology, though he did not admit that all of the allegations were true.
“Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized, but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed,” he said.
Lauer remained silent for months afterward, but in April, he released a statement to The Washington Post denying any abusive actions.
“I fully acknowledge that I acted inappropriately as a husband, father and principal at NBC,” he told The Washington Post. “However I want to make it perfectly clear that any allegations or reports of coercive, aggressive or abusive actions on my part, at any time, are absolutely false.”
Recently, we have seen a number of men accused of sexual misconduct during the #MeToo era make a comeback or begin to make a comeback, including Chris Hardwick, Louis C.K., and Aziz Ansari. But for now, it’s hard to imagine that we’ll ever see Lauer, who was accused of even more heinous actions by a far greater number of women, back on TV again.