Tag Archives: Michel Godbout

Michel Godbout leaving CBC for TVA Sports

Michel Godbout has found a new career opportunity over the horizon

Quebecor’s soon-to-be-launched TVA Sports specialty channel isn’t just looking to RDS hockey analysts like Dave Morissette and Yvon Pedneault (or La Presse’s Réjean Tremblay) for on-air talent. Their hiring spree has also poached CBC Montreal’s sports anchor.

Michel Godbout confirmed Monday that he will be leaving the CBC to join the TVA Sports channel set to debut this fall. His last day is July 30. (He was cut off early: see below)

Godbout (who is, as you can imagine, fully bilingual) worked for 15 years at Radio-Canada and then CBC Montreal – most famously as the evening news anchor between 2005 (when Dennis Trudeau retired) and 2009 (when Andrew Chang and Jennifer Hall took over a revamped newscast). He starts an anchoring job at TVA Sports on Aug. 22.

TVA Sports, which was approved by the CRTC in February 2010, has already signed deals to carry some Ottawa Senators games and most Montreal Impact soccer games, though it failed to get the government to break the deal the Canadiens have with RDS. Quebecor is also trying to get an NHL team to Quebec City, giving another big reason for fans to subscribe to this channel.

No word yet on who will replace Godbout permanently. CBC Montreal News Director Mary-Jo Barr is on vacation until August.

You can follow Godbout on Twitter at @GodboutSports (fortunately he won’t have to change that name – but expect it to be a bit more francophone in the future).

UPDATE (July 21): Thursday was Godbout’s last day. He says during an interview this morning on CBC Daybreak that he gave his two weeks’ notice on Friday (July 15), but was told that Thursday would be his last day, being let go because he was leaving for a competitor.

Godbout had a brief goodbye on air with Debra Arbec (Andrew Chang was off):

Michel Godbout to leave CBC Montreal anchor chair

CBC Montreal announced today the two co-anchors who will be helming the new supper-hour TV newscast, and neither of them is Michel Godbout.

Michel Godbout: "Returning to the field"

Michel Godbout: "Returning to the field"

Instead, the CBC is going younger, picking one familiar and one unfamiliar name to sit in the big chairs. Godbout, the release says, is going back to reporting, “returning to the field.” The release suggests Godbout is eager to get back on the front lines, though that’s not quite the impression one gets when reading his Twitter post on the subject. Godbout, a known softie, tells us below not to read too much into that Tweet.

Replacing Godbout on Sept. 8 (a week after the new 90-minute newscast debuts) are reporters Andrew Chang and Jennifer Hall.

The announcement was sent to the media shortly before the 6pm newscast and was made on the air by Jeniene Phillips, who is replacing the vacationing Godbout in the anchor chair, at the very end of the hour-long newscast. It included video of Hall and Chang at their desk in what appears to be a new set:

Jennifer Hall and Andrew Chang try out their new anchor chairs

Jennifer Hall and Andrew Chang try out their new anchor chairs

Chang is a familiar face to CBC Montreal viewers, one of the youngest faces on the newscast and a solid multimedia reporter who has been with the station since 2005.

Hall, on the other hand, is an import. She comes from Ontario, where she served as national reporter for CTV’s “A” News network. Though she has experience as a news anchor, she’s spent her career (and education) in Ontario and is entirely new to the Montreal news scene.

Frank Cavallaro remains at his post as the weather presenter.

CBC’s release is below:

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CBC seeking co-host for Montreal at Six

Michel Godbout has been hosting CBC News Montreal at Six alone since 2006. (Fagstein photo illustration)

Michel Godbout has been hosting CBC News Montreal at Six alone since 2006. (Fagstein photo illustration)

Thomas tips me off to a job posting from the CBC for a co-anchor for its weeknight Montreal newscast (the only remaining local programming on CBMT).

The posting doesn’t make it clear, but I’m assuming the co-anchor will be added to the desk next to current anchor Michel Godbout, who has been hosting the newscast since he replaced longtime Newswatch anchor Dennis Trudeau.

I’m not quite sure about the strategy behind this. Dual anchors are at best redundant, and while a lot of News at Six involves Godbout speaking, he does it well enough. Especially considering the current firing craze at the network, it seems silly to hire someone new for purely aesthetic reasons.

And even then, what’s the point? Silly host banter? We already have that with Godbout and “weather specialist” Frank Cavallaro.

Besides, the studio space allotted to CBC News at Six is so tiny, it would be cramped with two people inside.

Applications are due by June 10. Any takers?