Soledad O’Brien has landed a new gig. The “Today” show alum will join former colleague Bryant Gumbel on HBO’s “Real Sports” series, the Associated Press reports.
HBO announced Wednesday that O’Brien will work as a reporter on “Real Sports,” a monthly magazine-style series anchored by Gumbel, AP reports. Her first story, which will investigate a group of war veterans who use martial-arts to cope with post-traumatic stress disorder, will air in late June.
''It's exactly what I've been doing for a long time - telling stories about human beings and their struggles,'' O’Brien said, according to AP. “Real Sports” is known for its hard-hitting personal interest stories, albeit with a sports slant.
O’Brien is a seasoned veteran of the television news circuit. She had anchored CNN’s “Starting Point” morning talk-show since 2012, but the network recently decided to give the program an overhaul. O’Brien last appeared on the show in March, and will be replaced by an anchor team consisting of Kate Balduan and Chris Cuomo, AP reports. Previously, she co-anchored the “Today” show’s weekend edition from 1999 to 2003.
While O’Brien’s experience in sports coverage is limited, she does have an athletic background. The 46-year-old played rugby while attending Harvard University, AP notes.
O’Brien’s new deal with HBO also gives the network rights to the first look at projects done by her production company, Starfish Media Group, AP reports. The “Real Sports” reporter has a history of producing and selling documentaries, and maintains a separate arrangement with CNN to continue her “Black in America” series, which she has headed for the past few years.