It has been a year full of shake-ups for ABC’s morning talk show The View, and now comedienne Sherri Shepherd, who has been part of the panel for seven years, is also departing. On Thursday evening, the 47-year-old released a statement revealing the surprising news, thanking her fans and the crew of the show for allowing her to be a part of the show. Shepherd’s departure follows the creator of the show, Barbara Walters, stepping away from her chair in May.
The statement was released through a representative and posted on the website Deadline.
“After careful consideration it is time for me to move on,” it reads. I am extremely grateful to Barbara Walters and Bill Gedde for giving me the opportunity [and] look forward to the business opportunities that lay ahead for me.”
Rumors have constantly led up to the official announcement, with Shepherd allegedly being let go because of her often controversial views based in her religion. In the latest batch of them, Jenny McCarthy, who joined onto the morning talk fest in 2013, is also said to have been fired along with Shepherd departing the show. However, there has been no definitive word on McCarthy being asked to step down.
ABC has released a statement on their own regarding Shepherd leaving the morning talk fest, expressing that they are “moving in an exciting new direction” for the next season of the show. “[We have] made decisions to evolve the show creatively,” it also stated.
Shepherd has not had the luckiest year in her life. In the same month Walters stepped down from The View, it was revealed that Shepherd was beginning divorce proceedings with her second husband, Lamar “Sal” Sally. She and Sally were married back in 2012. Adding to the drama of the separation, Sally had taken Shepherd to court to obtain full custody to their unborn child, currently being carried by a surrogate.
To add insult to injury, she is also in the middle of a court battle with her first husband, Jeff Tarpley, who attempted to gain custody of their only nine-year-old child, Jeffrey. According to court documents, Tarpley claimed that due to negligence from Shepherd’s raising of their son, young Jeffrey, who battles autism, was having a hard time developing normal skills and often had issues with his personal hygiene.
Shepherd remained mostly tight-lipped on her personal troubles, but did speak out somewhat about her issues at the 13th Annual Samsung Hope for Children Gala in New York City earlier this month.
“Growth is hard and growth is a struggle,” she said to E! News. “I feel as long as you can get up and look up, you have another chance and another chance to make things right.”
She also hoped that through all of the “craziness” she was dealing with, “my character and my integrity speaks for me, so I stand behind that.”
No word on when Shepherd’s last show date will be. On Friday, a pre-taped episode of The View will air, which includes Barbara Walters returning to the table to promote an interview with Peter Rodger, the father of Elliott Rodger; the young man who killed six people and wounded 13 before taking his life at the University of California, Santa Barbara, in May.
By Jonathan Brown