Karl's ready for "Schoolies for oldies" week on Today show
HE'S the larrikin hundreds of thousands of Australians choose to spend their mornings with.
Karl Stefanovic's blend of infectious cheekiness with a hard-hitting journalism background is helping Channel 9's Today show close the gap with breakfast TV front-runner Sunrise.
The role sees Stefanovic interviewing Grumpy Cat one minute, and grilling the Prime Minister the next.
"There was a guy who used to run 60 Minutes, John Westacott, who's a legend in the business. He said to me many years ago 'You won't know if you're any good at the job until you can come up with any topic at all and talk for three minutes about it'," Stefanovic tells APN.
"Shifting gears is the most difficult part of the job and the one that takes the longest to get across, you know, to be able to shift from a prime minister to the price of food to the Oscars to gossip."
The Gold Logie winner got his start in television as a cadet reporter for WIN in Rockhampton and Cairns.
After a stint overseas and reporting for Channel 10, Stefanovic joined Channel 9 and was the network's LA-based correspondent for two years before taking the helm on the Today show in 2005.
This week the Today show will broadcast from various cities and regional towns across the country.
The show broadcasts from Uluru today, Bendigo tomorrow, Launceston on Wednesday, Sydney Harbour on Thursday and the Gold Coast on Friday.
Stefanovic jokes the week will be like "Schoolies for oldies".
"It's like Schoolies except we have better alcohol, better accommodation and we go for a shorter amount of time," he says.
"It entails Dickie (Richard Wilkins) and I going out for two to three hours in the evening to get across the local area, and get a real feeling for what's happening on the ground in those particular areas."
He also jokes about wearing the same outfit for the entire week. That's not surprising after he made headlines for wearing the same blue suit for an entire year to highlight gender inequality on television.
"I'll be wearing the same thing for an entire week just to keep the consistency," he says.
"Viewers get disturbed if they wake up and someone's got something different on, so my plan is just wearing the same thing all week. It just makes it easier. Stinky but solid, you know?"
Don't expect the Today co-host to repeat his suit experiment any time soon.
"I think everyone was surprised, and no one more than myself, about how much publicity that got," he says.
"I don't think you can think about it too much. You just let it happen and let it unravel and see what happens. The moment you start planning things too much people can see that it's been planned too much and it doesn't have the same impact.
"There's nothing I'm planning at the moment but things do occur to me and I come up with things all the time, as people will know from the show. That can either be really successful or terribly burdensome on my cast members."
The Today show airs weekdays at 5.30am on Channel 9/WIN.