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What Jennifer Aniston has said about the real scandal that inspired The Morning Show

It has been two very long years, but The Morning Show is finally back! The Jennifer Aniston- and Reese Witherspoon-led Apple TV series officially has a premiere date for its third season — and the latest trailer looks explosive.

The on and off screen drama swarming fictional media company UBA's signature morning news show will have fans on the edge of their seat come September 13, when the first two episodes of the ten-episode season debut.

As hinted in the trailer, it appears the characters have finally emerged from the rubble Steve Carrell's character left in the wake of his sexual misconduct scandal.

Still, while the cast appears to have bigger problems in the cyber attack the trailer teases, the first two seasons' bombshells cast a huge shadow — as do the real life events that very clearly inspired it.

When The Morning Show first debuted in 2019, its plot was undeniably reminiscent of the shocking, real life scandal that was Matt Lauer's abrupt exit from his longtime position on the Today Show.


Matt Lauer's Today Show co-star shares rare update on anchor's life away from the spotlight

In November of 2017, NBC announced that the former anchor's tenure on the morning show had been terminated, following accusations that he sexually harassed a female employee during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. (None other than Hoda Kotb and Savannah Guthrie announced the news of Matt's departure live on air.)  

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Several other allegations, including those of rape and indecent exposure, followed, and were exposed in detail in Ronan Farrow's explosive 2019 book, Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators. Matt's self-inflicted downfall was, of course, just one of many high-profile cases of sexual misconduct brought about that fall amidst the #MeToo movement, which began with news of Harvey Weinstein's widespread misconduct.

The similarities between NBC and the fictional UBA in The Morning Show were impossible to ignore, and shortly after the first season premiered, Jennifer acknowledged that shows like the Today Show and Good Morning America inspired her show and character.

© Apple TV+

In fact, speaking with Variety, she confirmed the show's script was completely reworked "from scratch" after Matt's scandal, and the MeToo movement.

She even admitted she watched the Today Show episode from the day before he was fired, and wondered: "Did he know? Did he not know?"

© Apple TV+

"I was so devastated," she recalled of hearing the news, adding: "It's such a strange thing; it felt oddly like my dad did something terrible. I trusted him and had been interviewed by him. He was there for so many moments in my life. And when Friends was ending, it was Katie [Couric] and Matt interviewing us."

MORE: Reese Witherspoon supports Jennifer Aniston with sweet Instagram post

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However, she also maintained: "Mitch Kessler [Steve's character] is not based on him at all. He's just sort of the archetype of all of the men that he's representing."

She noted the characters are "all fictional," however said Steve's does highlight the "aspects of the archetype of a charming narcissist, of a generation of men that didn't think that was bad behavior."

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