After 11 years at Extra, Mario Lopez is making the jump to Access Hollywood. The Saved by the Bell vet will join Kit Hoover and Scott Evans as host of NBC’s entertainment news show, succeeding Natalie Morales, TVLine has learned.
In addition to Access Hollywood, Lopez will preside over its daytime counterpart, Access Live, which will now be called Access Daily. Both gigs begin on Monday, Sept. 9. Lopez has also signed an overall development and producing deal for both scripted and alternative programming with Universal Television.
“We are thrilled to have someone of Mario’s caliber join our Access team,” Maureen FitzPatrick, a senior executive producer of both Access Hollywood and Access Daily, said in a statement. “Mario has grown up in the business and is able to offer our viewers a unique insight on the latest Hollywood headlines. Additionally, as a husband and father of three young children, he has a respect for the daytime audience who are looking for a break in their hectic lives with uplifting stories of everyday people transforming their lives and making a difference in their communities.”
Lopez’s move comes as Extra makes the leap to Fox-owned stations this fall with new host Billy Bush. (Yes, that Billy Bush.) As previously reported, Extra will be rebranded as Extra Extra and shift its focus to a mix of pop culture, sports and politics.
Will you follow Lopez over from Extra to Access Hollywood? Or will you be turning your dial over to the Bush-hosted Extra Extra? Hit the comments with your reactions.