Tamron Hall was on a mission to prove people wrong and show her value with the success of her now award-winning talk show “Tamron Hall,” following her exit from the “Today” show.
“I can honestly say something that I’ve never said… I was determined to prove people wrong, and probably in an unhealthy way – in some ways,” the host told TheWrap during a recent interview. “Looking back at that, I really wanted to prove my value…I wanted to prove to young women, and women over a certain age, like myself, that we’re not disposable.”
At first glance, one might be confused by Hall’s seemingly unconfident thoughts, especially with her mountain of achievements. Prior to being daytime It Girl, she carried more than 30 years of experience as a hard news journalist, had a resume decorated with three Emmy nominations and was the first Black woman to host NBC’s “Today” show.
On Tuesday, Hall entered the fifth season of her two-time Emmy-winning (13-time nominated) talk series “Tamron Hall.” In addition to that achievement, she’s wrapped up “Watch Where They Hide,” the second installment of her mystery book series “As the Wicked Watch,” which is set to come out in February 2024 and is looking to be lined up for a TV series adaptation. On top of that, she just sold a cookbook, a children’s book, is working on two documentaries and has been approached to executive produce a couple of lifestyle shows and reality series.
“I am enjoying my garden,” Hall said of her blooming success. “But I am adding different kinds of flowers. I’m not just looking at that rose, I’m adding different kinds of flowers.”
Leaving what she called her “golden hour” in “Tamron Hall” Season 4 and entering her “North Star” era for Season 5, the journalist admitted that she struggled with imposter syndrome and self-doubt after leaving NBC.
“At the time, I would have been the only non-mom on the ‘Today’ show. I remember an executive telling me I’m not relatable because I don’t have a child,” Hall, who is now the mother of her 4-year-old son, Moses, said. “I’ve been a mom for four years, but I don’t equate my womanhood with my motherhood. I loved my life prior to becoming a mom and I love my life now.”
In 2017, NBC announced it would be replacing Hall’s 9 a.m. time slot as co-host on “Today” with former Fox News host Megyn Kelly, who was fired a year later over her comments defending blackface. Although Hall was offered the opportunity to stay at the network in another role, she decided to walk away.
“Just because you’re not picked for that team doesn’t mean you don’t have a team, and that’s really what my focus was,” Hall shared. “Now, that said, you have to let it go, and I probably should have let it go a little earlier so that I could be myself, that I could be in my body and in my experience versus what I wanted someone else to see.”
Hall’s bounce-back was what her fans got to see in her self-titled talk show, which made its debut in September 2019, just months prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. The outbreak led to the end of several shows and prompted the birth of audience-less talk shows and remote productions. But despite the odds against her, Hall said the pandemic sparked a sense of vulnerability that helped revitalize her sense of self-worth, which in turn strengthened “Tamron Hall.”
“I was forced to do the show from [home], and that snapped it,” Hall said. “We were all stripped bare of ego…We were all uncertain about safety, life, the future. That level of vulnerability allowed the show to become better in this weird way. And it allowed me to snap out of the need to still seek validation or affirmation from people I didn’t need it from anymore.”
For the 2022-2023 season, “Tamron Hall” — which is produced and distributed by Disney Media Distribution — has grown by 11% in total viewers and has become the only one-hour network or syndicated talk show to experience growth in total viewers, households and among women 25-54, per the show’s season-to-date figures. The show averages 1.1 million viewers a day.
She continued: “Now I have the ‘Tam Fam,’ and I have a team with ABC-Disney that supports the show, that saw the vision…I started to see people say, ‘I feel like she’s herself now.’ My friends were saying, ‘I feel that you are being who you are away from camera more.’”
Watch the Season 5 kick-off for “Tamron Hall” below.