Almost two months after announcing that Chris Cuomo would anchor CNN's new morning show, the network finally announced its full casting lineup.
"Situation Room" co-anchor and congressional correspondent Kate Bolduan was named co-host on Thursday. KTLA morning anchor Michaela Pereira will join as the show's news anchor.
Jim Murphy, who will serve as the show's executive producer, said of Bolduan, “It is a surprising choice, and we know that.” Reports about the network's interest in Bolduan for the morning show did not surface until just this week.
CNN president Jeff Zucker said he had been looking forward to making this announcement since he first joined CNN. "Chris, Kate and Michaela are a dynamic team that will give our viewers in America a new way to start their day," he added.
Zucker started to revamp CNN's morning show when he joined the network as president in January. This was not surprising, as CNN's morning program had been struggling to find a big audience and Zucker is known as a morning show whiz. He is the executive producer responsible for transforming "Today" into the number one morning show for 16 years.
He moved "Starting Point" host Soledad O'Brien off the show and quickly announced that Cuomo would serve as one of two new hosts. Rumors swirled that Zucker had his eye on primetime host Erin Burnett, but talks seemed to fall apart sometime after she was asked to co-anchor the network's coverage of Pope Benedict's final day.
CNN's new casting lineup mimics that of a network morning show like "Today," with two lead co-hosts and a news anchor. Though MSNBC's "Morning Joe" features Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski as co-hosts, the program primarily focuses on its roundtable discussions and rotating panel of regular guests (a format "Starting Point" borrowed without great success). Over at Fox News, the morning show has three co-hosts: Steve Doocy, Gretchen Carlson and Brian Kilmeade
The network did not yet announce a name for the new program. The show will air from CNN's New York City studios and will premiere this spring.