DeGeneres announced she will end her talk show after 19 years in 2022, telling The Hollywood Reporter: "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 revealed the news her staff on Tuesday and will talk to Oprah Winfrey about her decision on her Thursday show. DeGeneres' announcement comes two months after The New York Times reported that The Ellen DeGeneres Show lost 1 million viewers this season in the aftermath of her show's toxic workplace scandal. "I was going to stop after season 16," she told The Hollywood Reporter. "That was going to be my last season and they wanted to sign for four more years and I said I’d sign for maybe for one. They were saying there was no way to sign for one. 'We can’t do that with the affiliates and the stations need more of a commitment.' So, we (settled) on three more years and I knew that would be my last. That’s been the plan all along. And everybody kept saying, even when I signed, 'You know, that’s going to be 19, don’t you want to just go to 20? It’s a good number.' So is 19." DeGeneres was asked if last summer's toxic workplace controversy played a role in her decision to her end her show. "It almost impacted the show," she responded. "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 because I was sitting at home, it was summer, and I see a story that people have to chew gum before they talk to me and I’m like, 'Okay, this is hilarious.' Then I see another story of some other ridiculous thing and then it just didn’t stop. And I wasn’t working, so I had no platform, and I didn’t want to address it on (Twitter) and I thought if I just don’t address it, it’s going to go away because it was all so stupid." DeGeneres said the allegations -- which she learned through the press -- "destroyed" her, insisting that she had no idea that her show's workplace was anything but happy. "So, there was an internal investigation, obviously, and we learned some things but this culture we’re living is (is one where) no one can make mistakes," she said. "And I don’t want to generalize because there are some bad people out there and those people shouldn’t work again but, in general, the culture today is one where you can’t learn and grow, which is, as human beings, what we’re here to do. And I can see people looking at that going, 'You don’t care about what people (went through.)' I care tremendously. It broke my heart when I learned that people here had anything other than a fantastic experience — that people were hurt in any way. I check in now 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 and I don’t know why that was never considered before. I’m not a scary person. I’m really easy to talk to. So, we’ve all learned from things that we didn’t realize — or I didn’t realize — were happening. I just want people to trust and know that I am who I appear to be." Asked if she would return to movies or sitcoms, DeGeneres responded: "A sitcom seems like a walk in the park compared to this, 180 shows a year. I don’t know if that’s really what I want to do next, but movies for sure." DeGeneres added: "I don’t look at this as the end at all. It’s the start of a new chapter and hopefully my fans will go with me wherever I go. That being said, if I never do anything else ever again, I’m so proud of what this show stood for and still stands for and what we’ve made it through."
TOPICS: Ellen DeGeneres, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Cancelations, Renewals & Pickups, Daytime TV