Ellen DeGeneres Quits Her Talk Show

Ellen DeGeneres

Getty Ellen DeGeneres is ending her talk show after 19 seasons.

Comedian Ellen DeGeneres is saying goodbye to daytime.

In an exclusive interview with The Hollywood Reporter published Wednesday, May 12, the host said she’s ending “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” after 19 seasons.

“When you’re a creative person, you constantly need to be challenged – and as great as this show is, and as fun as it is, it’s just not a challenge anymore,” DeGeneres told the publication. The longtime host informed her staff on May 11, 2021 that the show would be ending after next season, the outlet reported.


DeGeneres Explains to Fans on “Ellen” Why She’s Calling it Quits

Ahead of the Thursday, May 13 episode airing at 3 p.m. Eastern, her show posted a preview of her monologue on social media in which DeGeneres addressed her departure following season 19. Of course, the comedian threw in a joke or two.

“Nineteen is a great number,” she said. “First of all, the 19th amendment gave women the right to vote…Also, on the periodic table, 19 is the atomic number for potassium.”

All jokes aside, DeGeneres told her fans why she ultimately made the decision to call it quits.

“The truth is I always trust my instincts. My instinct told me it’s time,” she said.

Just like her instinct told her it was time to come out as a gay woman, the comedian told fans. In 1997, DeGeneres appeared on the cover of TIME magazine with the words “Yep, I’m gay” beside her photo. That same year, her TV character, Ellen Morgan, came out as gay on the ABC sitcom “Ellen” per People.

In the video, DeGeneres also told her fans that she’s “grateful” for their decades-long support, adding, “You all have changed my life, and I am forever grateful to all of you watching, for laughing, for dancing, sometimes crying. This show has been the greatest experience of my life.”


Oprah Gives DeGeneres Advice Following Announcement

 

Following her announcement, DeGeneres sought advice publicly from former daytime talk show host Oprah Winfrey.

On Thursday, May 13, 2021, Oprah joined DeGeneres virtually on “Ellen” to discuss what life would be like for DeGeneres following her daytime gig. Oprah was after all in the same shoes 10 years ago when she bid farewell to “The Oprah Winfrey Show” in 2011 after 25 years, according to Oprah.com.

During the interview, DeGeneres asked Oprah what she thinks she will miss the most about hosting a talk show.

“I think you will miss the camaraderie of the audience,” Oprah told the comedian.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020, DeGeneres hasn’t had a live studio audience, and said she hopes by next season, her last, she’ll have one “that can celebrate with me and say goodbye.”


When Does the Last Episode Air?


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Her last episode will air in 2022.

“Although all good things must come to an end, you still have hope that truly great things never will,” Mike Darnell, Warner Bros.’ unscripted TV president, told The Hollywood Reporter.

The decision to end the show isn’t a surprise given that DeGeneres has entertained the idea in the past.

In a New York Times article in 2018 profiling the famous comedian, DeGeneres confessed that her wife, Portia de Rossi, was encouraging her to end the daytime talk show. However, she signed on for three more seasons, the outlet reported.

Three years later, the comedian told The Hollywood Reporter that she knew season 19 would be her last, adding, “That’s been the plan all along.”


DeGeneres Says “Hurtful” Allegations Didn’t Impact Decision


Ellen Degeneres Explains Why She’s Ending Her ShowEllen DeGeneres announced yesterday that she will end her talk show after next season. Savannah Guthrie speaks with DeGeneres about the decision, which comes 10 months after DeGeneres faced accusations of allowing/running a toxic workplace. » Subscribe to TODAY: on.today.com/SubscribeToTODAY » Watch the latest from TODAY: bit.ly/LatestTODAY About: TODAY brings you the latest headlines and…2021-05-13T12:46:30Z

 

DeGeneres’ decision comes on the heels of a year of scrutiny for the show after past and current employees have spoken out about what they say is the set’s “toxic” work environment.

BuzzFeed News spoke to several of those employees who said they didn’t feel valued or respected. Some said they were fired for taking medical leave or using their bereavement days. One employee said racist remarks forced her to leave.

The show’s executive producers, Ed Glavin, Mary Connelly and Andy Lassner, told Buzzfeed News in a joint statement that they are “truly heartbroken” and “sorry” to the employees who felt like they were treated unfairly.

“Over the course of nearly two decades, 3,000 episodes, and employing over 1000 staff members, we have strived to create an open, safe, and inclusive work environment,” they said. “We are truly heartbroken and sorry to learn that even one person in our production family has had a negative experience. It’s not who we are and not who we strive to be, and not the mission Ellen has set for us.”

In an interview with TODAY’s Savannah Guthrie, which aired on May 13, 2021, DeGeneres said that she’s not ending the show in light of the accusations.

“If it was why I was quitting, I would not have come back this year,” the comedian said, referring to season 18.

Prior to her TODAY interview, DeGeneres told The Hollywood Reporter that she didn’t believe the allegations at first. “Of all the talk shows I’ve done, everyone here is so happy,” she said.

DeGeneres told the mag she always prioritized “kindness” and compassion” on her set.

“I became a comedian because I wanted to make people feel good. It started when I was 13 years old when my parents got divorced, and I wanted to make my mother happy,” she said. “My whole being is about making people happy. And with the talk show, all I cared about was spreading kindness and compassion, and everything I stand for was being attacked. So, it destroyed me, honestly.”


Is Kelly Clarkson Taking Ellen’s Daytime Spot?

Kelly Clarkson, “The Voice” coach and host of “The Kelly Clarkson Show,” could potentially fill the prime daytime spot.

Page Six reported in January 2021 that Clarkson’s NBC show, which airs after the “Ellen” show at 3 p.m. in most TV markets, had seen an increase in ratings. Sources suggested Clarkson could replace DeGeneres in the 3 p.m. time slot, according to Page Six.

But that doesn’t mean Clarkson can swoop right in once “Ellen” ends. Page Six reported in January that the “Ellen” show execs “want to keep the time slots and put another host in her place.”

What’s more, research firm Nielsen said ratings for “The Kelly Clarkson Show” dropped 26% year over year for the six-month period from September to February, declining to 1.3 million viewers, according to The New York Times. During that same period, “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” lost more than a million viewers, a 43% drop from 2.6 million to 1.5 million viewers year over year.

READ NEXT: ‘The Voice’ Versus ‘American Idol’ 2021: Which Show Has Better Ratings?

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