Ellen DeGeneres ending show after 19 seasons

·3 min read

Ellen DeGeneres has been a stalwart of daytime talk shows for nearly 20 years, but the host announced this week "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" will be ending after its 19th season.

"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 Hollywood Reporter. 

DeGeneres, 63, told her staff about the decision on Tuesday and will discuss it on the May 13 episode of the show, during which she will sit down with fellow talk show queen Oprah Winfrey, THR reports. 

Warner Bros.' Unscripted TV President Mike Darnell told THR that "all good things must come to an end," but "you still have hope that truly great things never will." 

DeGeneres revealed in a 2018 New York Times profile that she was considering retiring from the show and that she had received conflicting advice on the decision from her wife, Portia de Rossi, and from her older brother, Vance DeGeneres.

In recent years, the spotlight on the show has seemed to dim, with the New York Times reporting in March that "Ellen" had lost 1 million viewers after reports about a toxic work environment at the show. 

Misconduct allegations from numerous employees were first reported by BuzzFeed News in July 2020. Employees claimed they faced "racism, fear, and intimidation" in the workplace and a second BuzzFeed article detailed allegations from "dozens of men and women who work behind the scenes" at the show who described sexual harassment and misconduct by top executive producers at the show.

"My name is on the show and everything we do and I take responsibility for that. ... As we've grown exponentially, I've not been able to stay on top of everything and relied on others to do their jobs as they knew I'd want them done. Clearly some didn't," DeGeneres said in a July letter to staff obtained by CBS News. 

Following the reports, three top producers left the program. A spokesperson for Warner Bros. confirmed to CBS News that Ed Glavin, Kevin Leman and Jonathan Norman parted ways with the show. Warner Media, the distributor of the show, also said at the time was launching an investigation into the allegations, CBS News' Jamie Yuccas reported. 

The show also saw another change: The show's resident DJ, Stephen "tWitch" Boss was named co-executive producer for the show, a representative for WarnerBros. confirmed to CBS News via email. 

DeGeneres had been filming her show from home during quarantine, but the show returned to the studio for its 18th season. DeGeneres started the season by addressing the accusations in her monologue: "There are a lot of things I want to talk about. I've been looking forward to addressing it all directly and, unfortunately, talking directly to people has been illegal for six months, so I have a virtual audience here instead," she said.

The host went said she takes the accusations of a toxic work environment very seriously and wants to say sorry to the people affected. She said her hope was that the show could still be a place of happiness and joy. 

"I still want to be the one hour a day that people can go to escape and laugh. I want to continue to help all of the people that we help every day. And I'm committed to making this the best season that we have ever had," she said.

CBS News has reached out to representatives of "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" and is awaiting response.

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Ellen DeGeneres to end daytime talk show