Gayle King and Charles Barkley Reportedly Near Deal for CNN Show

A new CNN show will feature two media giants. According to Variety, Gayle King and Charles Barkley are finalizing a deal that would have them lead a primetime show on the network each week. The show is scheduled to be an hour long, but Variety points out that "the pact is not complete." 

Puck previously reported that King and Barley were in negotiations for the new CNN show, and the Wall Street Journal reported that a contract involving King was nearing completion. CNN has not commented on the reported negotiations. King currently is a co-host on CBS Mornings on weekdays, and CBS News declined Variety's offer to comment. Barkley is a co-host on the popular NBA pregame and postgame show Inside the NBA, and the people from Warner Bros. Discovery were not available for comment.

CNN is looking for a boost in viewership. In the last few months, the network has dealt with layoffs and changes in its programming. Variety says the addition of King and Barkley to CNN would be similar to Larry King Live, the flagship show for the network from 1985 to 2010. On the show, the titular host would interview a celebrity or a notable person in the news every night.

King, 68, worked as a special correspondent for Good Morning America before working for CBS News. She is a longtime friend of Oprah Winfrey as the two met while working at a television news station in Baltimore. King worked as a special correspondent on The Oprah Winfrey Show and was the editor-at-large of O, The Oprah Magazine. In 2018, King was inducted into the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame. 

Barkley, a former NBA star, has been working for TNT since 2000 and has won multiple Sports Emmy Awards for his work on Inside the NBA. In October, Barkley and his fellow co-hosts, Shaquille O'Neal, Kenny Smith and Ernie Johnson, signed 10-year contract extensions with Warner Bros. Discovery. 

"We're all a big family. Ernie, Kenny and Shaquille are brothers to me, and I wouldn't still be here if it wasn't for them and all the amazing people who work on our show," Barkley said. "I'm not gonna lie, though, this is a life-altering deal…and I'm blessed to be able to do live television for a living."