Way Too Early with Jonathan Lemire
GenreMorning news show
StarringJonathan Lemire
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
Production locationNew York City
Running time60 minutes
Original networkMSNBC
Original releaseOriginal series:
July 27, 2009 (2009-07-27) –
August 12, 2016 (2016-08-12)
Revived series:
September 21, 2020 (2020-09-21) – present
Followed byMorning Joe

Way Too Early with Jonathan Lemire is an American morning news show that airs weekday mornings on MSNBC. The network has had shows with the title Way Too Early, both with and without the name of the host at the time, during two different time periods.

The first incarnation of Way Too Early premiered on July 27, 2009, hosted by Willie Geist. It was later hosted by a variety of NBC News on-air talent, including Thomas Roberts and others on a temporary basis, including Ayman Mohyeldin. The final host was Chief White House Correspondent Chris Jansing. It ended on August 12, 2016, as its lead-in program First Look was expanded back into the full hour and rebranded as Morning Joe First Look to build continuity with the later program. Another apparent reason for the name change was that the 5 a.m. timeslot had become nearly universally programmed as a morning news slot on local television stations in both the Eastern and Central Time Zones, making the title Way Too Early an artifact.

On September 10, 2020, it was announced that Way Too Early would return to the air with Kasie Hunt as the new host, starting on September 21.[1]

On July 16, 2021, Kasie Hunt announced she was delivering her final broadcast and would be joining CNN. On October 25, 2021, MSNBC announced that Jonathan Lemire would be the new host of the show.[2]


Phil Griffin, President of MSNBC, announced the show on July 15, 2009, and described it as a "pre-game show" for Morning Joe.[3] Mike Barnicle often filled in for original host Willie Geist, jokingly referring to the show as "Way Too Old (or Elderly) with Mike Barnicle", while Peter Alexander also covered for Geist. On September 24, 2012, NBC News announced that Geist would be named co-host of the 9 a.m. hour of Today, filling the co-host slot formerly held by Savannah Guthrie (who now anchors the 7-9 a.m. portion of the morning program).

The original executive producer was Chris Licht, who was also the co-creator and executive producer of Morning Joe before leaving MSNBC to become executive producer of CBS This Morning and Vice President of Programming at CBS.

Way Too Early was not branded "Brewed by Starbucks" like Morning Joe until the sponsorship deal expired in September 2013. Both shows had similar graphics packages, are broadcast from the same set, and frequently reference each other.

On May 8, 2013, MSNBC announced that CNBC reporter Brian Shactman would be the new regular host of Way Too Early. He began his anchoring duties for the show May 13, 2013.

On January 3, 2014, MSNBC announced that Thomas Roberts would be the new regular host of Way Too Early starting on January 13. Roberts left in mid 2015 to do various daytime anchor duties, with no guest host announced.

Way Too Early aired its final regular edition on July 22, 2016, from July 25 to August 12, 2016, Way Too Early expanded to 1 hour, taking over First Look briefly. The next Monday, Way Too Early became Morning Joe First Look, with a few former Way Too Early segments blended into the second half-hour.

On September 10, 2020, MSNBC announced it would relaunch Way Too Early, with Kasie Hunt as the new host, effectively replacing Morning Joe First Look, starting on September 21.[1]

On July 16, 2021, Kasie Hunt announced she was delivering her final broadcast.

Way Too Early had no permanent host until October 25, 2021, when MSNBC and Morning Joe co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski announced that Jonathan Lemire will be the new host of the show.[2]


Regular segments on Way Too Early have included:


Substitute hosts

Substitute hosts for the show have included Luke Russert, Savannah Guthrie, Peter Alexander, Mike Barnicle, Jonathan Capehart, Jonathan Lemire, Alicia Menendez, and Mark Halperin, with Bill Karins and Louis Burgdorf having hosted the entire program.


  1. ^ a b Steinberg, Brian (September 10, 2020). "MSNBC Expands Weekend Programming; Kasie Hunt Revives 'Way Too Early' on Weekdays". Variety. Retrieved September 11, 2020.
  2. ^ a b Lamere, Johnathan (October 25, 2021). "MSNBC Names new host of Way Too Early;". MSNBC. Retrieved October 25, 2021.
  3. ^ Ariens, Chris (July 15, 2009). ""Way Too Early" to Debut July 27". Adweek. Retrieved September 19, 2020.
  4. ^ Announced this was her last appearance at the end of her 7/16/21 show.
  5. ^ MSNBC announces on October 25, 2021 that Jonathan Lemire will be Hunts replacement.
Preceded byThe Rachel Maddow Show/MSNBC Prime (replay, Tuesday-Friday) MSNBC Weekday Lineup 5:00 am – 6:00 am (ET) Succeeded byMorning Joe