Lisa Wilkinson’s departure from The Project prompts Sky News’ Rita Panahi to list her mistakes

Lisa Wilkinson is ‘out of touch with reality’: The Project host’s biggest ‘mistakes’ are laid bare by a rival TV host

  • Lisa Wilkinson announced her departure from 10’s The Project on Sunday night 
  • Right-wing political commentator Rita Panahi slammed the TV host on Sky News
  • She said Wilkinson’s resignation speech was overly dramatic and full of self-pity 
  • Panahi then went through all of her ‘mistakes’ throughout her years in the media
  • It included her Logies speech and criticism of Karl Stefanovic in her memoir

A rival TV host has slammed Lisa Wilkinson as being ‘out of touch with reality’ as she made her ‘dramatic’ exit from The Project – before listing the TV presenter’s ‘mistakes’ over the years.

Wilkinson revealed she would be departing Channel 10’s current affairs program on Sunday night, saying ‘targeted toxicity’ from sections of the media was behind her exit.

It comes as comedian Peter Helliar abruptly quit the show on Tuesday night, and Carrie Bickmore is set to leave next week.

But right-wing commentator Rita Panahi decided to sink the boot in Wilkinson once more, claiming her resignation speech was over the top.

Lisa Wilkinson (pictured) announced her shock exit from The Project on Sunday. It comes as Peter Helliar and Carrie Bickmore also announced their resignations from the program

Lisa Wilkinson (pictured) announced her shock exit from The Project on Sunday. It comes as Peter Helliar and Carrie Bickmore also announced their resignations from the program

‘Typical of Lisa Wilkinson, the announcement of full of drama and self-pity,’ she said.

She cut to Wilkinson’s farewell on The Project, where the TV host said: ‘The last six months have not been easy.’

‘And the relentless targeted toxicity by some sections of the media has taken a toll, not just on me, but on people I love…I don’t always get it right. But by God, I’ve tried.’

It then switched to entertainment reporter Peter Ford, who ruthlessly mocked her speech.

‘Lisa, love, you’re not working in the salt mines for Siberia, it’s three hours a week on television. Someone provides your dress, someone does your makeup, your script’s written for you,’ he said on Melbourne radio station 3AW.

It cut back to Panahi, who said in response: ‘That was entertainment reporter Peter Ford giving Lisa Wilkinson a much-needed dose of reality.’  

Panahi then outlined Wilkinson’s many ‘stuff ups’ throughout her years in the media.

She began with the TV host delaying the trial of Brittany Higgins’ alleged rapist Bruce Lehrmann due to her Logies acceptance speech.

Wilkinson won a Logie for her sit-down interview with Brittany Higgins, in which the ex-Liberal staffer alleged she was raped by her colleague Bruce Lehrmann in a minister’s office in 2019.

The original trial date was slated for June 27 but in the aftermath of Wilkinson’s acceptance speech, a judge delayed the high-profile case ruling it would be ‘unfair’ to continue among the public commentary surrounding the case. 

Right-wing political commentator Rita Panahi (pictured) blasted the TV host in a segment on Sky News by going through all of her 'mistakes'

Right-wing political commentator Rita Panahi (pictured) blasted the TV host in a segment on Sky News by going through all of her ‘mistakes’

3AW entertainment reporter Peter Ford (pictured) slammed Wilkinson for her overdramatic resignation speech on the current affairs show

3AW entertainment reporter Peter Ford (pictured) slammed Wilkinson for her overdramatic resignation speech on the current affairs show

Panahi then spoke about Wilkinson’s apology to former Coalition MP Dr Andrew Laming for accusing him of taking an inappropriate photo of a woman.

She apologised to Dr Laming in June of this year for making the controversial tweet, which she wrote back in March 2021. 

‘Just to clarify, it only took her 16 months to admit she was wrong there,’ Panahi clarified. 

The Sky News host then turned to Wilkinson’s memoir, where she alleged her former Today show co-host Karl Stefanovic treated her poorly after she came back from her honeymoon.

She wrote in her book: ‘How could he still treat me with such uncaring disregard?’

‘For two hours, I sat there feeling completely useless. The Today Show was now The Karl Show.’

‘What was the point of me even being there? The camera were on me so there was nowhere to hide. And yet, I felt completely invisible.’ 

Wilkinson claimed 'targeted toxicity' from sections of the media was behind her departure

Wilkinson claimed ‘targeted toxicity’ from sections of the media was behind her departure 

Stefanovic co-hosted the Today show with Wilkinson for ten years until 2017. She alleged he treated her poorly after she came back from her honeymoon

Stefanovic co-hosted the Today show with Wilkinson for ten years until 2017. She alleged he treated her poorly after she came back from her honeymoon

Panahi showed the footage of the day she was referencing in that instance, where Stefanovic is seen greeting his co-host warmly and asking about her honeymoon.

Finally, the right-wing host slammed Wilkinson for berating former NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian for not enforcing a harsher lockdown and Covid restrictions during the pandemic. 

Wilkinson also praised Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews for ‘stamping’ out Covid outbreaks with harsh lockdowns.

‘That would be Victoria, where more than five million people endured the world’s longest lockdown and where the state government managed to record the highest Covid death rate in the country,’ said Panahi in response.

‘You nailed it there, Lisa,’ she added. 

WIlkinson was signed by Ten for a staggering $1.7 million a year in 2018.

However, her appearance on The Project has done little to stop the decline in the ratings. 

OzTAM ratings have previously revealed The Project had lost almost a third of its audience since 2011.

Last year, OzTAM ratings revealed Channel 10's flagship current affairs program had lost almost a third of its audience since 2011. Pictured (L-R): Tommy little, Peter Helliar, Hamish Macdonald, Carrie Bickmore, Waleed Aly, Lisa Wilkinson and Gorgi Coghlan

Last year, OzTAM ratings revealed Channel 10’s flagship current affairs program had lost almost a third of its audience since 2011. Pictured (L-R): Tommy little, Peter Helliar, Hamish Macdonald, Carrie Bickmore, Waleed Aly, Lisa Wilkinson and Gorgi Coghlan

The struggling show saw its metro ratings plummet to an all-time low of just 367,000 last year.

That’s a 30 per cent decline from its five-city audience of 538,000 a decade earlier.

Peter Helliar became the latest star to quit as the mass exodus from the struggling Channel Ten show continues.  

The comedian cited the need for more time to work on other ventures.

Long-time anchor Carrie Bickmore confirmed her departure a month ago. Her last appearance is scheduled for next Wednesday’s program. 

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