Fox News, CNN to ring in 2018 with new hosts amid bitter cold in NY

Fox News, CNN to ring in 2018 with new hosts amid bitter cold in NY

Fox News and CNN will ring in the new year Sunday evening with some new hosts amid bitter cold temperatures in New York City.

Fox News will ring in 2018 from Times Square with a new set of hosts for its annual special: Jesse Watters and Lisa "Kennedy" Montgomery.

The festivities will also include hundreds of thousands of revelers attempting to withstand the coldest temperatures since 1962 and possibly the coldest since 1917, when thermometers registered 1 degree at midnight.

When the ball drops to welcome 2018, the temperature is expected to be 10 degrees, with a wind chill making it feel like it is below zero.


"I'm a little nervous about that and I’m going to have to start buying babushkas or something because it looks like it will be record lows," said Watters, referring to a headscarf tied under the chin popular among older Russian women.

"I don't like to complain about the weather on New Year's," the "Watters' World" host continued. "It's a great opportunity and we sound like a bunch of pansies if we say 'Oh we're going to have to host a New Year's show in the middle of Times Square for the No. 1 cable channel and we’re gonna be a little cold.' 

"So, I’m not going to be complaining and we’re gonna have the times of our lives."

Kennedy, who lived in California for many years after graduating from UCLA, said she's ready for the elements, based on her childhood experience with Oregon winters.

"I’ve been snowboarding. I grew up in Oregon and I will be impervious to the elements," declared Kennedy, a Lake Oswego, Ore., native.

"I am actually excited. I have been collecting garments for weeks to properly layer and that's what it’s all about. It’s all about the layering and the ultimate layer has to be the one that the wind can’t get through, but the rest of it has to create the perfect recipe of insulation. I can speak for Jesse when I say we’re gonna put the 'fun' in tundra and it’s going to be the 'fundra.' "

The cable news landscape will again be unlike any other night between rivals Fox News, CNN and MSNBC.

On CNN, Andy Cohen replaces the ousted Kathy Griffin in joining New Year's Eve veteran Anderson Cooper in Times Square.

Cohen and Cooper are close friends and have performed together in the past, including the duo's comedy show, "An Intimate Evening With Anderson Cooper & Andy Cohen," which toured the country in 2017.

Griffin was let go from her annual CNN duties in May after holding up a mocked-up bloody, severed head with the likeness of President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump nominates Jeffrey Rosen to replace Rosenstein at DOJ McCabe says ‘it’s possible’ Trump is a Russian asset McCabe: Trump ‘undermining the role of law enforcement’ MORE in a photo shoot.

After the image went public on May 30, Cooper called it "disgusting and completely inappropriate" in a tweet to his 9.95 million followers.

Cohen, the host of the hit Bravo nightly series "Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen" was named as Griffin's replacement in October.

Griffin had co-hosted the previous 10 years with Cooper, the network's highest-paid anchor.

CNN host Don Lemon and anchor Brooke Baldwin will take over at 12:30 a.m. Eastern time from New Orleans, which is located in the Central time zone.

MSNBC will also offer special programming in the form of “The Year's 10 Most ... with Brian Williams and Nicolle Wallace" at 8:00 p.m. Eastern time.

The list of impactful figures includes special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE and his investigation into possible collusion between Russia and Trump campaign associates at the top of the list, along with Trump's Twitter feed, Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainMellman: Where are good faith and integrity? GOP senator says Republicans didn't control Senate when they held majority Pence met with silence after mentioning Trump in Munich speech MORE (R-Ariz.), Russian President Vladimir Putin, ex-NFL star Colin Kaepernick and former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Fox News had offered Eric Bolling and Kimberly Guilfoyle as its primary hosts of its "All-American New Year" in 2015 and 2016, but Bolling was ousted from the network amid sexual harassment allegations in September.

Watters and Kennedy, who both host primetime shows on Fox News and Fox Business, respectively, also noted the challenge those attending the ball-drop in Times Square will be facing in terms of unprecedented security and a lack of bathrooms available for those penned-in to specific areas on a block-by-block basis.

In the past, attendees have arrived more than 12 hours before midnight and aren't able to use a bathroom or legally drink alcohol during that entire time.

"That's the miracle of science which Jesse and I will somehow solve: We’re going to get to the bottom of, the bottom, and how in fact people either dehydrate themselves for the entire day or if there are contraptions," joked Kennedy, a former MTV star.

"You have to realize we've had two terror attacks in New York City this year," she added. "The [New York Police Department] isn't screwing around, so people aren't going in and out of the pens and they're not going to have access to anything until after the ball is dropped and they start to clean up the some of confetti and so, you know, the two challenges will be bladder control and crowd control. It will be very interesting to see how it is all coordinated."

Watters says despite the chaotic news cycles seen almost daily on cable news in 2017, it was still a pretty good year for the country when asked to summarize the year in less than ten seconds.

"I would just say it was the year of Donald Trump 24/7. We had hurricanes and we had 'Little Rocket Man' [Trump's characterization of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un] and a lot of fake news, but I think it was a pretty good year for America," he said.

"Twitter mass hysteria, almost Roy MooreRoy Stewart MooreRepublican state official faces pushback for comments on Sinema's attire Hillicon Valley: Dem blasts groups behind Senate campaign disinformation effort | FCC chief declines to give briefing on location-data sales | Ocasio-Cortez tops lawmakers on social media | Trump officials to ease drone rules Domestic influence campaigns borrow from Russia’s playbook MORE and Hillary [Clinton] victimization nonstop," Kennedy added, referring to the failed Republican Alabama Senate candidate and former Democratic presidential nominee.

Along with Kennedy and Watters starting at 10:00 p.m., the network will also offer New Year's Eve coverage beginning at 8:00 p.m. with hosts Ed Henry, Lisa Boothe and former "Superman" actor Dean Cain.

The iconic ball has been dropped at midnight to mark the new year 107 times, starting in 1907.

The ceremony was suspended only twice — in 1942 and 1943 due to “dimout” lighting restrictions in New York City during World War II in an effort to protect the city from air and naval attacks at the height of the conflict.

— This report was updated at 10:21 a.m.