Sharon Osbourne is forced to quit The Talk after bosses rule her defense of Piers Morgan against claims of racism did not ‘align with a respectful workplace’
- CBS confirmed Sharon Osbourne’s departure in a statement issued on Friday
- The Talk had been on a two-week hiatus following a heated on-air debate
- Osbourne defended her friend Piers Morgan’s criticism of Meghan Markle
- Demanded her black co-host explain her claim Morgan’s criticism was racist
- Allegations then emerged that Osbourne made racist remarks about co-hosts
- She furiously denied the allegations and said accusers had axes to grind
- Osbourne reportedly demanded millions in severance if she were forced to quit
- She has retained a powerhouse attorney to handle all her negotiations with CBS
Sharon Osbourne has left The Talk following a dispute over her defense of Piers Morgan’s criticism of Meghan Markle, CBS confirmed in a statement on Friday.
Osbourne, 68, ended her more than a decade with the daytime chat show following the heated on-air debate on March 10, which sent the production into a hiatus that has lasted two weeks.
The controversy began when Osbourne delivered a vociferous defense of her friend Piers Morgan, who quit Good Morning Britain after furious criticism of his staunch insistence that he did not believe Markle’s explosive claims in her interview with Oprah Winfrey.
Allegations then emerged that Osbourne made racist remarks about co-hosts behind the scenes at The Talk, claims which she has staunchly denied.
Sharon Osbourne has left The Talk after a controversy that began with her on-air defense of Piers Morgan, who said he did not believe Meghan Markle
The controversy began with an on-air debate in which Osbourne defended her friend Piers Morgan’s criticism of Meghan Markle. Osbourn and Morgan are seen together above
The controversy stems from Markle’s remarks in the Oprah interview, in which she accused the Royal Family of racism and said she was driven to suicidal thoughts
The Talk, which has been on hiatus since March 12 in the aftermath of the controversy, will return on April 12 — but without the sharp-tongued Osbourne, who has been a fixture on the show for 11 seasons.
‘Sharon Osbourne has decided to leave The Talk,’ CBS said in a statement confirming her departure. ‘The events of the March 10 broadcast were upsetting to everyone involved, including the audience watching at home.’
‘As part of our review, we concluded that Sharon’s behavior toward her co-hosts during the March 10 episode did not align with our values for a respectful workplace,’ the statement continued.
‘We also did not find any evidence that CBS executives orchestrated the discussion or blindsided any of the hosts,’ CBS said, responding to allegations from Osbourne’s camp that she was ‘set up to fail’ by being spurred into the debate by producers.
‘At the same time, we acknowledge the network and studio teams, as well as the showrunners, are accountable for what happened during that broadcast as it was clear the co-hosts were not properly prepared by the staff for a complex and sensitive discussion involving race,’ the statement added.
‘During this week’s hiatus, we are coordinating workshops, listening sessions and training about equity, inclusion and cultural awareness for the hosts, producers and crew. Going forward, we are identifying plans to enhance the producing staff and producing procedures to better serve the hosts, the production and, ultimately, our viewers,’ CBS said.
‘Sharon Osbourne has decided to leave The Talk,’ CBS said in a statement confirming her departure. ‘The events of the March 10 broadcast were upsetting to everyone involved, including the audience watching at home’
On The Talk, Osbourne defended Morgan in an on-air debate with co-host Sheryl Underwood, which turned heated as Osbourne demanded ‘educate me’ on how Morgan is racist
Osbourne had reportedly cited clauses in her contract to demand millions in severance if she were forced to quit, but it was not immediately clear whether CBS had agreed to pay out.
A spokesman for Osbourne did not immediately respond to an inquiry from DailyMail.com.
The controversy stems from Markle’s remarks in the Oprah interview, in which she accused the Royal Family of racism and said she was driven to suicidal thoughts which were dismissed by the Palace.
Morgan stormed off of Good Morning Britain after saying he believed none of her claims, and ultimately quit the ITV show.
Then on The Talk, Osbourne defended Morgan in an on-air debate with co-host Sheryl Underwood, which turned heated.
‘Educate me, tell me when you have heard him say racist things,’ Osbourne said of Morgan to Underwood, who is black.
‘I very much feel like I’m about to be put in the electric chair because I have a friend, who many people think is a racist, so that makes me a racist?’ Osbourne added.
That led to a dust-up with Underwood, who was taken aback by the fierceness of Osbourne’s defense.
Osbourne issued an apology for her remarks, but the show went into hiatus as CBS launched an investigation.
Allegations then emerged that Osbourne had made racist or otherwise crass remarks about co-hosts behind the scenes at The Talk.
Osbourne (far right) and Underwood (second from left) got into a heated exchange over Osbourne’s support for her friend Piers Morgan (third from left), who has come under fire for comments he made about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. Morgan posted this photo in February 2020 of the show’s former panel from last year. From left to right: Carrie Ann Inaba, Underwood, Morgan, Marie Osmond, and Osbourne
Piers Morgan expressed his disappointment after Osbourne apologized
Former co-stars Julie Chen and Leah Rimini publicly came out to complain that Osbourne once referred to Chen as ‘a wonton’ and Rimini as being ‘ghetto’.
A report from Yashar Ali also alleged that Osbourne called former co-host Sara Gilbert a ‘fish eater,’ among other things; Gilbert is a lesbian.
Osbourne furiously denied the allegations in an interview with DailyMail.com, calling the claims ‘all c**p’.
‘In situations like this, you’re always going to get people who you’ve had disagreements with in the past, people who’ve got axes to grind, who come out of the woodwork and they’ll come out with their BS and that’s it. It doesn’t surprise me at all. It doesn’t surprise me,’ she said.
‘Of course, it’s a pile on. People want to add fuel to the fire and it comes with the territory and that’s fine,’ Osbourne said.
She added: ‘Being accused of racism is no joke. Now they get their sweet revenge. I can’t even address it because it’s kids in a schoolyard.
‘Coming out with stupid, childish comments – it’s like really? That’s all you’ve got?’
Asked if she had ever called Chen a wonton, she added: ‘It’s all c**p. It’s all c**p. I don’t want to go there with her. She makes her living out of outing people. So, it’s like come on.
‘It’s got no real foundation. Allegations of calling a Chinese lady a wonton, it’s like – is that all you’ve got? It’s like really?’
Osbourne also faced claims from former co-host Holly Robinson Peete, 56, that she got her fired because she was ‘too ghetto’ for Osbourne.
Osbourne has strongly denied the allegations and posted a screenshot of an email sent by Robinson Peete on Twitter that suggests her firing was due to former host Julie Chen – who is married to ex boss Moonves – instead.
Osbourne (left) furiously denied allegations that she called former co-host Julie Chen (right) ‘wonton’ and ‘slant eyes’ behind the scenes at The Talk
A report also alleged that Osbourne (left) called former co-host Sara Gilbert (right) a ‘fish eater,’ among other things; Gilbert is a lesbian
Holly Robinson Peete, who co-hosted the first season of The Talk in 2010, claimed Osbourne got her fired, tweeting: ‘I’m old enough to remember when Sharon complained that I was too ‘ghetto’ for #theTalk … then I was gone’
The TV star and wife of rocker Ozzy Osbourne, 68, shared an email from her former colleague over the weekend, which she argues ‘speaks for itself’ on the issue
Osbourne has tapped powerhouse attorney Jeremiah Reynolds from the Eisner law firm to represent her in the dispute with CBS, Page Six reports.
‘Sharon wasted no time in getting her lawyers immediately on the case. Jeremiah Reynolds has a very strong reputation as a trial and arbitration lawyer and is handling all her negotiations with CBS,’ a source familiar with the internal investigation said.
‘The network will have to pay her a sizeable settlement to keep her quiet after this,’ the source said. ‘She could write a book, she would do a world of interviews. She knows where all the bodies are buried.’
Reynolds has an extensive rap sheet as a corporate brawler who has represented the Kardashian Family, Jennifer Lopez, Kate Hudson, Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Danny DeVito and Paris Hilton.
Sharon Osbourne reportedly demanded a payout in the tens of millions to leave her co-hosting job on The Talk, amid allegations that she made racist remarks.
A confidante had claimed Osbourne would strictly enforce contract provisions if she was forced off the show.
The person added: ‘She is furious about the slew of accusations made about her and is refusing to bow to the mounting pressure to leave.’
‘As far as she is concerned, she apologized over the on-air debate and hasn’t done anything else wrong,’ the source added.
Osbourne, who managed the solo career of her rocker husband Ozzy Osbourne for decades, first gained national fame of her own with the debut of the MTV reality show The Osbournes in 2002.
She went on to become a panelist on America’s Got Talent before joining The Talk in its premier season in 2010. Before her departure, she had been the last remaining co-host from The Talk’s original lineup.
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