Rosie O'Donnell confirms plans to do a daytime talk show

Rosie O’Donnell confirmed multiple reports today by announcing that she is developing a talk show for fall 2011, when Oprah Winfrey is scheduled to leave daytime. O’Donnell, who is teaming with former Warner Bros. TV executives Dick Robertson and Scott Carlin, plans to limit each show to one topic with in-studio guests and will tape them five days a week in front of a live New York audience. “In many ways I am way more equipped and prepared to do this show than my last one,” O’Donnell said in a statement. “I’ve evolved and grown and learned a lot about myself over the last eight years. The business has changed significantly since I left and obviously, come fall 2011, daytime television will change in a very dramatic way. I want to build on what Oprah began and excelled at for 25 years, in my own style and with new adaptations and ideas. I would like this show to make a difference in viewer’s lives, to be real, uplifting, authentic and focus on life, love and laughter.”

Carlin, who spoke with EW, said O’Donnell is not trying to repeat what she accomplished on The Rosie O’Donnell Show, the syndicated yakker from Warner Bros. TV that helped her earn the nickname the Queen of Nice. (The soft-serve, Emmy-winning show aired from 1996-2002.) “She’s already done a variety show and she was incredibly successful,” says Carlin, who, like Robertson, helped to launch her first talk show while working at Warners. “A void will exist starting in September with the single-subject format and Rosie would like to have some serious conversations, to get those big interviews.

“This is clearly a tipping point for daytime,” Carlin continues. “Rosie wants to get out there and do something exciting with water cooler moments. She’s not going to try to be provocative.”

O’Donnell has 18 months to develop the show and create awareness for her return to TV, but she’s already in an advantageous position: she has a two-hour radio show on Sirius XM and also has a devoted following online. It’s unclear whether she’ll be able to secure most of Winfrey’s old time slots — the ABC stations in some top markets have indicated plans to air local news in the afternoon once Winfrey leaves — but Carlin said it doesn’t matter where O’Donnell starts out come 2011. “It’s all about where you end up,” Carlin says. “As long as a show is working in enough time periods, it will eventually evolve. If the show is working, it can move to better stations and maybe even move to the afternoons.”

Comments (20 total) Add your comment
  • Serena

    “She’s not going to try to be provocative.” Un-hunh.

  • Tom McAndrew

    I think she’ll be perfect for this format! But…I’m sure the haters will be out in full force on this site, with all kinds of immature, negative, homophobic garbage. Ignore them – ROSIE ROCKS!

    • whatevs

      Immature and negative? I doubt Rosie is going to post something on this site.

    • Vicky

      Not a hater or any of those other things- but I WILL not be watching Rosie!

  • NYLA

    I’m over it.

  • Bobby

    This has got failure written all over it.In the immortal words of Donald Trump “She’s disgusting!”

    • 123

      I’m not sure why you’re quoting Trump, the man is kinda a joke.

      • Bobby

        Yeah he is,but it’s true.

      • jeff

        Does Rosie McDonalds not have a mirror in her house?

    • 123

      Rosie’s only had success in the daytime talk show host format so I have no reason not to think that this won’t be good.

  • i’m a lady

    i like the idea. she has a distinct point of view that is worth hearing.

  • alan from Canada

    She’s one of the funniest people out there. Can’t wait.

    EW I hope you do a better job moderating these comments about Rosie than you did on the article that appeared here last weekend. They were mean, vile and immature.

    • Nshi

      …..but true.

    • jeff

      With Oprah retiring, can Rosie fill her shoes?

      Yes, size 16AA, Quadruple wide plus

  • sandy

    This sounds like a great idea! Good luck with the show Rosie!

    • sandy

      I’ll definitely be watching.

  • bringbackrocky

    EW is already doing a better job since they took down some of the homophobic comments posted last week about this topic. Freedom of speech is one thing; intolerance and bigotry and hatred is something else.

  • 123

    With Bonnie being canceled, Oprah ending, the View being just simply intolerable and Ellen’s shtick getting old…I welcome a new show to watch!

  • david archuletta

    Maybe her first show can be about why her Children of the World adoption agency got forced out of business, – by me. I’d only be too happy to be the first guess. How about you Steve I. Sklar, adoption attorney.

  • Jody Schreiber


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