‘Today’: Al Roker Can’t Wait To Get Back in the Studio – ‘I Miss Everybody’
Since March 2020, Al Roker and his Today co-anchors have been largely – except Hoda Kotb for the most part – delivering the news and happenings from their homes, due to the pandemic.
Roker recently opened up about how, while the morning show crew has been making it look awfully easy right now, it’s going to be an even greater challenge once everyone is back in the studio.
The ‘Today’ show cast’s recent reunion
The cast of the morning show – Roker, Savannah Guthrie, Hoda Kotb, Craig Melvin and Carson Daly – reunited in July 2020, socially distant of course, after anchoring from home for so long.
It was a wonderful moment for the group.
Guthrie said on the program at that time, “I think that’s been the hardest part is that we really love meeting up in the morning and spending our whole mornings together,” she said. “It’s really almost the show before the show. It’s the time before the time. All those early hours before 7 o’clock when we get to hang out. I definitely miss that.”
Roker misses his ‘Today’ crew
For Roker, who’s been hosting his segments from out of his home since March, it’s something he’s gotten used to, but it certainly is not the same as being in the Rockefeller Center studios.
“I miss everybody,” he told TV Insider in July 2020. “Not only do I miss those folks who are on it, but I miss our group. Our camera people, our stagehands, our audio people, our floor directors, the folks in our ear down in the control room. They’re all part of the fabric of the show.”
The father of three recalled when he’d last seen his NBC team live and face to face.
“March 15th was the last time we’d all been together,” he said. “It was very emotional. I didn’t cry, but I was a little misty. It’s like that old Joni Mitchell song, no one seems to know what they’ve got ’til it’s gone. Something that you take for granted, when it’s all of a sudden ripped from you, it’s like, ‘Wow.'”
Social distancing will make co-hosting ‘Today’ difficult
He mused on what the live program will be like once everyone returns to the studio at the same time. With 5 to 7 people on set, things can get a little crowded quickly.
“It’s a conundrum,” he continued, “especially in the morning, because you have a cast of people, as opposed to, say, Nightly News with Lester Holt. It’s just one person, we’ve got the whole cast.”
“So, I don’t know what it’s going to be like. So I think we’ve done a good job being in boxes, physically, but it’s been tough. For the third hour of ‘Today’ we had a virtual cocktail hour.”