Ellen DeGeneres Plans to End Talk Show Next Year

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FILE - In this Oct. 13, 2016, file photo, Ellen DeGeneres appears during a commercial break at a taping of "The Ellen Show" in Burbank, Calif. A state legislator wants an audit of the California Lottery to look into a whistleblower complaint about more than $212,000 worth of scratchers tickets that were given to the DeGeneres' TV show for audience gifts. The Los Angeles Times reports, Friday, Feb. 7, 2020, the lottery viewed the contribution as a publicity boon but the complaint filed by some lottery employees contends the giveaway was a "misuse of funds." (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)

Ellen DeGeneres tells the Hollywood Reporter that she has decided to end her long-running show, Ellen, in 2022 amid “toxic” workplace allegations.

“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 explains to the Hollywood Reporter.

The Daytime television host has battled with ending her show for years. In her 2018 New York Times profile, the comedian expressed the conflicting views between her wife Portia De Rossi, who urged her to quit the 180-show-a-year commitment. Still, her brother and Warner Brothers executive producers persuaded her to continue.

“My brother was like, ‘People look forward to this show every day, and there aren’t many shows out there that are just pure joy like this,’” DeGeneres tells Hollywood Reporter. “He’s always been my biggest advocate and — not that Portia isn’t, but she’s also selfish and wants me to do things that I’m challenged by, and she’s watched me come home every day saying, ‘I just feel like there’s something more I could be doing.’”

At the time, she decided to stay, signing on for another 3 seasons.

“Although all good things must come to an end, you still have hope that truly great things never will,” says Warner Bros.’ unscripted TV president Mike Darnell. Up until last April, Darnell has urged DeGeneres to reconsider her decision to leave the show. He refers to the series as “an absolute phenomenon.” To Darnell, the Ellen Show was “the premier destination for both superstars and incredible heartfelt human-interest stories.”

FILE – Ellen DeGeneres appears during a taping of the “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” in Burbank, Calif. on May 24, 2016. DeGeneres, who has seen ratings hit after allegations of running a toxic workplace, has decided her upcoming season next year will be the last. It coincides with the end of her contract. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)

DeGeneres’s decision to end her daytime-award-winning show follows the public controversy about the “toxic” work environment behind the scenes.

In July 2020, Buzzfeed released an expose uncovering how DeGeneres’s “Be Kind” mantra is fluff for the camera. Behind the scenes, employees express that they have faced racism, micro-aggressions, forms of intimidation, and fear.

Although controversy evolving her show is not the reason for it’s ending, the public scrutiny did hurt her.

“It almost impacted the show,” says DeGeneres. “It was very hurtful to me. I mean, very. But 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, but it was hard.”

The famed talk show host opened season 18 of The Ellen Show with an apology to her staff.

“I learned that things happen here that never should have happened,” says DeGeneres. “I take that very seriously. And I want to say I am so sorry to the people who were affected.” 

The biggest thing that the host will miss about her show, her staff.

“I’ll miss everything else,” DeGeneres confesses. “Listen, this is my family. They’ve become my best friends. I come to work, and I laugh every single day.”

DeGeneres will sit down with Oprah Winfrey for a special episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Thursday, May 14th.