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Natalie Barr ‘surprised’ Seven offered Sam Armytage another contract after ‘narcissists’ comment

Sunrise co-host Natalie Barr was reportedly surprised when her predecessor Sam Armytage extended her contract with Channel Seven for another year.

Many industry observers had expected Armytage to walk off into the sunset and leave the TV industry behind after quitting the breakfast show in March to spend more time at her Southern Highlands farm with husband Richard Lavender.

But her decision this month to re-sign with Seven apparently blindsided Barr, who didn’t expect her to stay at the network given unflattering remarks she had made about her colleagues following her exit from Sunrise, reports Woman’s Day.

Not going anywhere: Many industry observers had expected Armytage (pictured) to walk off into the sunset and leave the TV industry behind after quitting the breakfast show in March to spend more time at her Southern Highlands farm with husband Richard Lavender

Breakfast TV wars: Sunrise co-host Natalie Barr (left) was reportedly surprised when her predecessor Sam Armytage (right) extended her contract with Channel Seven for another year

Weeks before leaving Sunrise, Armytage had ruffled feathers by telling News Corp’s Stellar magazine the TV industry was ‘full of sociopaths and narcissists’.  

A source said: ‘[These comments] should’ve been a career suicide… Nat, along with other colleagues, is worried that by allowing her back they’re sending the wrong message.

‘Imagine how Nat feels? Thankfully, after a series of back-to-back crisis meetings, senior management have assured [her] she’s got nothing to worry about.’

Armytage isn’t expected to return to Sunrise, and her commitments at Seven in 2022 are believed to be limited to horse racing coverage and guest hosting Farmer Wants A Wife alongside Natalie Gruzlewski.

Unexpected: Armytage's decision this month to re-sign with Seven apparently blindsided Barr, who didn't expect her to stay at the network given unflattering remarks she had made about her colleagues following her exit from Sunrise, reports Woman's Day

Unexpected: Armytage’s decision this month to re-sign with Seven apparently blindsided Barr, who didn’t expect her to stay at the network given unflattering remarks she had made about her colleagues following her exit from Sunrise, reports Woman’s Day 

Woman’s Day claims Seven may have extended Armytage’s contract simply to prevent her from signing to another commercial rival.

The network may also be concerned about the possibility of Armytage releasing a ‘brutal tell-all’ memoir, like former Today co-host Lisa Wilkinson has done.  

Barr, Sunrise’s long-serving newsreader, replaced Armytage as co-anchor in March, stepping in alongside David ‘Kochie’ Koch. 

All is forgiven? Weeks before leaving Sunrise, Armytage had ruffled feathers by telling News Corp's Stellar magazine the TV industry was 'full of sociopaths and narcissists'. A source said, '[These comments] should've been a career suicide... Nat, along with other colleagues, is worried that by allowing her back they're sending the wrong message'

All is forgiven? Weeks before leaving Sunrise, Armytage had ruffled feathers by telling News Corp’s Stellar magazine the TV industry was ‘full of sociopaths and narcissists’. A source said, ‘[These comments] should’ve been a career suicide… Nat, along with other colleagues, is worried that by allowing her back they’re sending the wrong message’

Concerns: Woman's Day claims Seven may have extended Armytage's contract simply to prevent her from signing to another commercial rival. The network may also be concerned about the possibility of Armytage releasing a 'brutal tell-all' memoir

Concerns: Woman’s Day claims Seven may have extended Armytage’s contract simply to prevent her from signing to another commercial rival. The network may also be concerned about the possibility of Armytage releasing a ‘brutal tell-all’ memoir

The two women reportedly feuded in the months after Armytage left the show. 

Soon after her departure, Armytage took a swipe at Barr by tweeting: ‘Nat’s wanted the job, forever… and she’s finally got it.’

Unfortunately for Barr, the former anchor won’t be leaving the hallways of Seven anytime soon as she prepares to make a guest appearance on dating show Farmer Wants a Wife, alongside her husband Richard Lavender, next year.

Rivalry rumours: The two women reportedly feuded in the months after Armytage left Sunrise

Rivalry rumours: The two women reportedly feuded in the months after Armytage left Sunrise

She's back! Unfortunately for Barr, the former anchor won't be leaving the hallways of Seven anytime soon as she prepares to make a guest appearance on dating show Farmer Wants a Wife, alongside her husband Richard Lavender, next year

She’s back! Unfortunately for Barr, the former anchor won’t be leaving the hallways of Seven anytime soon as she prepares to make a guest appearance on dating show Farmer Wants a Wife, alongside her husband Richard Lavender, next year

Armytage, who married wealthy farmer Lavender, 60, late last year, will assist with the matchmaking process alongside host Natalie Gruzlewski. 

‘I’m thrilled to be joining Farmer Wants a Wife in 2022,’ she said in a statement earlier this month. 

‘I’ve always been a huge fan of the show and of country people, and I know first-hand that falling in love with a farmer is just about the most wonderful thing you can do.’

Helping others find love: Armytage, who married wealthy farmer Lavender, 60, late last year, will assist with the matchmaking process alongside host Natalie Gruzlewski

Helping others find love: Armytage, who married wealthy farmer Lavender, 60, late last year, will assist with the matchmaking process alongside host Natalie Gruzlewski

Her guest role will involve hosting a segment called Sam’s Choice, in which she introduces the farmers to a ‘new lady based on her own expertise and experience’.

Seven’s Director of Programming, Angus Ross, said the network was ‘thrilled to welcome Sam back to our screens’. 

‘Farmer Wants a Wife has been such a hit with audiences because of its heart and Natalie’s earnest mission to help farmers find the love of their lives,’ Mr Ross said.

More roles: Armytage will also feature in coverage of six horse racing events in 2022

More roles: Armytage will also feature in coverage of six horse racing events in 2022 

‘Given Sam’s new life on the farm, she’s in the perfect position to share a snapshot of what farm life could look like for the ladies.’  

Armytage will also feature in coverage of six horse racing events in 2022.  

The Daily Telegraph reports she will shoot ‘packages from the races to be incorporated into Seven’s coverage’ but won’t be presenting or calling races.

‘She was contracted to the end of the year so we expected this might be a case of her being a few new projects to see her through but a new contract reopens the door. She could turn up anywhere in the future,’ an insider said. 

The new season of Farmer Wants a Wife premieres next year on Seven

New gig: The Daily Telegraph reports she will shoot 'packages from the races to be incorporated into Seven's coverage' but won't be presenting or calling races

New gig: The Daily Telegraph reports she will shoot ‘packages from the races to be incorporated into Seven’s coverage’ but won’t be presenting or calling races 


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