Ellen DeGeneres Denies Talk Show Is Ending Over Misconduct Allegations

On Wednesday, Ellen DeGeneres announced that her long-running talk show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, will end after the upcoming Season 19. The announcement came after months of speculation that the talk show had run its course, with speculation having arisen in recent months that the series would be canceled following the concerning misconduct allegations made against the show. However, DeGeneres says those claims, which led to an investigation, did not factor into the decision.

Confirming her show's end to The Hollywood Reporter, DeGeneres admitted that while the allegations "almost impacted the show," they are not the reason she decided to end it. She said, "if I was quitting the show because of that, I wouldn't have come back this season. So, it's not why I'm stopping." The comedian revealed she decided on a 2022 end date all the way back in Season 16, which was when she originally wanted to end the show. At the time, DeGeneres said producers "wanted to sign for four more years and I said I'd sign for maybe for one." However, DeGeneres was told that wasn't possible, as "the affiliates and the stations need more of a commitment." So, DeGeneres said, they settled "on three more years and I knew that would be my last." Although she admitted seeing her talk show come to a close will be emotional, she never wavered on the decision.

"When we did our 3,000th show, they showed that highlights montage and everybody was emotional. We all hugged and everyone had tears in their eyes, and Mike Darnell was here going, 'You really want to [end this]?' Look, it's going to be really hard on the last day, but I also know it's time," she said. "I'm a creative person, and when you're a creative person, you constantly need to be challenged, which is why I decided to host the Oscars or why I decided to go back to stand up when I didn't think I would. I just needed something to challenge me. And as great as this show is, and as fun, as it is, it's just not a challenge anymore. I need something new to challenge me."

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The end of the series comes on the heels of the headline-making scandal following a July BuzzFeed News expose detailing allegations of a toxic workplace. The allegations were made by several former and current staffers and eventually led to WarnerMedia launching an investigation and three top producers being fired. Speaking with THR, DeGeneres said, "it broke my heart when I learned that people here had anything other than a fantastic experience — that people were hurt in any way." She said she now checks in "as much as I can through Zoom to different departments and I make sure people know that if there's ever a question or ever anything, they can come to me."