Tamron Hall’s faith in herself pays off with new show, life | TribLIVE.com
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Tamron Hall’s faith in herself pays off with new show, life

Associated Press
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AP
Former NBC “Today” show co-host Tamron Hall poses for a portrait at Ruby’s Vintage Harlem in New York to promote her self-titled syndicated talk show, premiering Sept. 9.

When Tamron Hall decided to leave NBC after the network gave her prime “Today” co-hosting slot to Megyn Kelly, the journalist threw herself a party — a pity party.

That included plenty of tears and a bit of feeling sorry for herself— to the point that “my mother said to me, ‘You can always come back to your room here,’ and I’m like, ‘Mom that’s not in the plan!’”

She didn’t have a specific plan when she left in 2017. All she had was faith that something bigger had to be on the horizon.

“I leaned on my mom, and my mother has the saying, ‘God didn’t bring me this far to let you go.’ And so at some point I could not just keep regurgitating the line leap of faith — I had to believe it,” she recalled, laughing, in a recent interview. “I’ve got to believe in something, so why not believe in myself?”

That belief has paid off with amazing dividends for Hall, who not only now has a husband and a 4-month-old son Moses, but her own eponymous show that will debut across the nation on Monday.

“She loses her job, her dream job of her life, and at that moment, she’s what, 45, 46? She doesn’t have a job, she doesn’t have the kid she thought she was going to have, she doesn’t have the husband she thought she was going to have,” says Bill Geddie, “The View” creator who came out of retirement to be executive producer on “Tamron Hall” with Hall.

“Instead she rebuilds herself just though force of will . and everything comes together in 2019. So, it’s kind of an amazing story, one you don’t see a lot, and a lot of people relate to it.”

Hall was hosting the successful third hour of the “Today” show with Al Roker when NBC decided to make room for Kelly; Hall decided to opt out of her contract instead of taking a lesser role. Kelly later imploded in the slot after making racist comments.

“Tamron Hall” will enter an already crowded talk space when it debuts in syndication, including a new entry from Kelly Clarkson, whose talk show bows the same day.

Hall, 48, is not concerned though, because what she thinks “Tamron Hall” will provide is a unique factor —herself.

“At one point I was on four networks at the same time. I was doing MSNBC, the ‘Today’ show, ID (Investigation Discovery network) and TLC, coupled with Bear Grylls and regularly hosting the Macy’s Fourth of July. So at any given time, people know me from six different, versions of my career,” she said, while enjoying a glass of wine while sitting at the Harlem restaurant Ruby’s Vintage. “And we thought, it’s a range of an audience. Let’s bring all of those people into one location.”

To that end, “Tamron Hall” might focus on a newsy topic one day, and fashion the next. Another show could focus on motherhood. Perhaps dating and relationships. Or crime, which speaks to Hall’s work on ID and her personal experience from being the sister of a murder victim.

“The beauty about the show is that it’s not about one lane, it’s a reflection of who she is in her entirety,” said co-executive producer Talia Parkinson-Jones, a veteran of the Wendy Williams show. “We know exactly what she wants, which is to inspire people.”

Don’t expect a show with lot of shouting about politics. Says Geddie: “I’ve had enough of that, and I’d like to do something different now.”

Though she lives in Harlem and has been a New Yorker for years, there’s a universal appeal that Hall enjoys that even she didn’t realize until her time off, as she traveled the country speaking at events.

But her TV destiny was set, and soon, Disney came calling, and her TV show was put into motion. Unbeknownst to most involved with the show, Hall was also working on another project — having a baby with her husband, music executive Steve Greener, whom she married earlier this year.

Hall went through IVF to conceive and recalls getting shots to prepare for the procedure as she was crisscrossing the country while shooting “Deadline: Crime With Tamron Hall.” She laughed as she recalled getting a shot from her celebrity hairstylist Johnny Wright while in the back of an Uber.

It was a process Hall had been through several times in the past, unsuccessfully. Though some women might have postponed the process during such a busy time, Hall had learned through past experience that it didn’t really matter.

“Both (the show and the baby) were so out of my control and that was the similarity,” she said. “I can only put so much into both of those.”

“That is my life. That’s the show I want to do. That’s the voice I want to have. And I think that it’s where I’m supposed to be,” she said.

Categories: AandE | Movies TV
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