Political talker quits: After 16 years it's over today: Anne Will one last time on "Anne Will"

For politicians it is certainly one of the most important places to be heard.

Political talker quits: After 16 years it's over today: Anne Will one last time on "Anne Will"

For politicians it is certainly one of the most important places to be heard. On Sunday evenings after “Tatort” on the first – when millions in Germany have watched the crime thriller – “Anne Will” begins. Anyone who sits in the top slot on the political talk show on the public ARD program can initiate and shape the week's debates. The journalist Anne Will is quitting now. On Sunday (December 3rd, 9:45 p.m.) she will moderate the talk panel for the last time.

The 57-year-old has had such a strong influence on the talk evening for 16 years that one could almost think that the show would still have to be called “Anne Will” even without her. But of course that's nonsense. Months ago, the working title for the show of her successor and ex-"Tagesthemen" presenter Caren Miosga (54) became known: "Miosga".

Like Will, Miosga then competes with ZDF competitors Maybrit Illner ("Maybrit Illner") and Markus Lanz ("Markus Lanz") and on ARD with Sandra Maischberger ("Maischberger") and Louis Klamroth ("hard but fair"). However, none of these talk presenters have their own show at the same time as Miosga.

Anne Will, who used to present the “Tagesthemen” for many years alternating with Ulrich Wickert (80) and was previously at the “Sportschau”, has not yet announced what she will do in the future. In January, Norddeutscher Rundfunk (NDR), which is responsible for "Anne Will" on ARD, announced that it wanted to tackle new projects, "about which it is already in discussions with NDR."

The public broadcaster has not commented on possible cooperation since then. Will said in the joint press release at the time: "In 2024 a new start is announced! Then there will be time for change, other projects, new perspectives."

According to NDR, an average of more than 3.6 million people (market share 15.1 percent) saw the political talk in 2022. In 2021 there were 4.12 million. A look at previous years: According to the broadcaster, there were 4.18 million viewers in 2010 and 3.97 million in 2020. 2015 - broadcast slot Wednesday - on the other hand only 1.48 million. There were 553 issues in 16 years with more than 1,300 discussion guests.

In 2011, the time slot for her talk show, which is produced in Berlin, changed to Wednesdays. The reason: The Sunday evening spot was cleared for presenter Günther Jauch and Will had to vacate the field. In a "Spiegel" interview in 2010, Will complained about a "month-long stalemate" and said: "That was unpleasant. It can be done better." In 2016 it returned to Sunday evenings.

The Cologne-born journalist began her career in public broadcasting. She did a traineeship at Sender Freies Berlin (SFB, later RBB) and then worked there in the radio sector. In a program on Radio Eins (RBB) to mark 100 years of radio, she recently said in conversation with the new "Tagesthemen" presenter Jessy Wellmer: "I really enjoyed working for radio." Her goal was to become a “blazingly fast radio reporter”. "It didn't quite work, but it still went OK."

Politicians knew about the importance of the “Anne Will” program. Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU), for example, chose the journalist several times for individual interviews in order to place her messages. The fact that Will is valued by politicians was made clear by this remark by Saxony-Anhalt's Prime Minister Reiner Haseloff (CDU) on the show last Sunday: "It's a shame that you're leaving."