Sarah Harris has admitted she felt “sadness” about her new role as one of the hosts of The Project.
The TV presenter and journalist was last week announced as Carrie Bickmore’s replacement on Channel 10’s news and current affairs stalwart series.
But Harris said in a new interview with Stellar: “It’s tinged with a bit of sadness. Because I now step away from a show that’s been my baby for the better part of a decade.
“But the little show that could is still humming along and has some big plans for 2023, as well. And we’ll always be family.”
Harris has been with morning program Studio 10 since the show’s launch in 2013 and was its last founding presenter.
Harris will join The Project from 2023, co-hosting with Waleed Aly. She called the opportunity an “once-in-a-lifetime” gig and said she didn’t see it coming.
“I’m still trying to wrap my head around it. It’s such an incredible opportunity to step into some pretty huge shoes and be part of The Project’s next chapter. I can’t wait to learn more, and have some fun with Waleed and the team. This is one of the biggest jobs on TV,” she said.
The move to a nightly job caps off a tumultuous time for Harris, who shared the pain of her divorce from ex-husband Tom Ward, from who she separated in early 2021. The pair share two sons, Paul and Harry.
She said of her emotional journey in the aftermath of her separation, “It’s real and it’s scary. There’s that feeling there’s no real anchor there, there’s no one on the end of the phone, even though there always is.
“When you go through something like that, it’s like walking around with no skin and you feel like everyone can see your insides. You feel so exposed and vulnerable. It was hard because I was dealing with all these changes with the show as well.”
Studio had gone through a shake-up in late-2020 when Tristan MacManus was brought on to co-host alongside Harris.
But the presenter said that despite the challenges, she has found grace and surprising wisdom from her young children.
“I’m so proud of how resilient they’ve been and how they know they’ve got two parents who absolutely love them more than anyone or anything else on the planet. It’s been good to keep that focus.
“[Paul] said to me the other day, ‘Mum, do you know that even if you don’t have any friends, you have always have a friend with you? Mum, you should always be your own best friend.’
“How was it taken me to age 41 to learn that, yet my six-year-old is all over it? That’s what we should be teaching our kids.”
Harris will join The Project at a dramatic time for the show, which will lose three of its high-profile hosts. In addition to Bickmore’s exit, Lisa Wilkinson has also stepped away from the desk and within the week, Peter Helliar also said he was leaving.
Wilkinson said she wanted to “reprioritise a few things in my life” and cited “toxicity” from sections to the media as a driving factor behind her decision to quit.
Helliar said he wanted to focus on other professional commitments.
“I need to create some space for some projects that I want to work on,” he said.
Read the full interview in Stellar, available in News Corp’s The Sunday Telegraph (NSW), Sunday Herald Sun (Victoria), The Sunday Mail (Queensland), and Sunday Mail (SA)
Story Credit: news.com.au