Shocking to many, long overdue to others, Sukayna Krishnan is leaving WPIX. The veteran morning anchor gives an emotional announcement at the close of Wednesday’s broadcast.
“My time here at PIX is coming to end.”
She’s leaving at the end of May with no mention of future plans.
Krishnan started at Channel 11 in 2001 and rose to morning anchor in 2004. But there was rarely a dent in the ratings and, one by one, co-anchors were shown the door. Krishnan, for better or worse, was the constant for waking up watchers.
She put her best foot forward, decking out in a blue dress for the New York Emmy Awards Saturday night. Krishnan wrote on her Facebook page, “I wasn’t going to go but I decided that life is too short and every moment and accomplishment must be celebrated, especially now.”
Krishnan could have exited with some sweet revenge, but didn’t take home the Best News Anchor award.
In a touch of irony, the trophy goes to Kori Chambers, who had been Krishnan’s morning co-anchor before being switched to weekends and fill-in weeknights. Double irony, as Chambers’ AM replacement Scott Stanford wins for Best Sports Anchor.
It was Stanford who had the duty of giving his on-air partner the final two minutes for a rare “timed release’ goodbye,
“Your support have given me confidence to be me, the strength to embrace every challenge, and that special bond is something I will always carry with me,” Krishnan tells viewers while fighting through tears.
Expect another emotional moment when Krishnan says her final goodbye in a few weeks.
In March, TunedIn speculated that her time might be running out at WPIX. It’s uncertain if this is a salary dump related to the impending Tribune sale.
Three players are in the running: Fox, Sinclair and Nexstar, but Bloomberg News reports Sinclair Broadcasting is close to completing the acquisition at $45 a share to gain its first foothold in New York City. However, sources say Fox is trying to block the deal.
A Fox purchase would be the most devastating to staffers on East 42nd Street. 21st Century Fox has an interest because many of their affiliates are on Tribune stations. An insider says in a best case scenario they sell off Channel 11.
Fox could keep WPIX and let the bloodletting ensue. Not competing against its WNYW/Channel 5, Fox could cancel the morning show and early evening broadcast, while moving the 10 p.m. newscast to 11 p.m. If it sounds familiar, think WWOR. Of course, we remember how that ended? The other possibility—like the Channel 9 debacle–pull the plug on news entirely and have another clearinghouse for Fox programming.
“Tribune wants to get out of the television business,” one PIX insider says.