The Ellen DeGeneres Show is coming to an end, as confirmed by the comedian Wednesday. The daytime talk show has been at the center of controversy ever since former and current staffers alleged there was a toxic workplace environment on the show. In light of those allegations, WarnerMedia launched an investigation into these claims in which they spoke to former and current employees about their experiences. The show subsequently fired three top producers.
DeGeneres confirmed the end of her long-running talk show May 12, revealing how Season 19 — the show's upcoming season — will be the last. DeGeneres reportedly informed staff of the show's upcoming end on May 11 and will further open up about the decision during a sit-down discussion with Oprah Winfrey on DeGeneres‘s May 13 show. Although the decision to end the series comes amid the recent scandal, The Hollywood Reporter said it had been several years in the making. DeGeneres. "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," she said in a statement to the outlet. In his own statement, Mike Darnell, Warner Bros.' Unscripted TV President, stated: "Ellen was and is an indelible piece of the television landscape, and it will be sorely missed."
The allegations against The Ellen DeGeneres Show first emerged earlier this year, as several former and current employees alleged that they experienced a toxic work environment while on the series. In July, Buzzfeed News published a report that contained accounts from some current and former staffers in which they alleged that they experienced racism in the form of microaggressions and intimidation while on the set. WarnerMedia subsequently announced that they were launching an investigation to look into these claims.
Following the news of the investigation into the show's workplace, The Ellen DeGeneres Show fired three of its top producers — Ed Glavin, Kevin Leman, and Jonathan Norman. The show announced that three of its other producers, Mary Connely, Andy Lassner, and Derek Westervelt, would remain with the show, with DeGeneres at the helm. At the time, they also announced that the talk show's resident DJ, Stephen 'tWitch' Boss, would be brought on as an executive producer. While the show has now been officially canceled, it was largely believed that the series would continue to air, as DeGeneres noted that she would address this matter on the program.
In light of all of the allegations concerning the show, DeGeneres sent a memo to her staff in which she apologized for what allegedly took place behind the scenes. "I'm so so sorry for what this has become. I've left this to be a well-oiled machine, and I realize it's not a machine…its human beings," her message read, according to The Hollywood Reporter. "I apologize for anyone whose feelings I've hurt. I'm not perfect. I'm multi-layered, and I learn from my mistakes. I care about each and every one of you. I'm grateful for each and every one of you."
Addressing the scandal with THR, DeGeneres denied they led to the show's end, telling the outlet, "if I was quitting the show because of that, I wouldn't have come back this season." She went on to reveal that she was "going to stop after season 16. That was going to be my last season," though she ended up swinging on for three additional seasons at the time and she knew Season 19 would be her last, telling the outlet, "that's been the plan all along."