This Co-Host From ‘The View’ Learned She Was Fired From the Show in a News Article
ABC’s daytime talk show The View has seen its share of revolving co-hosts. The current team – Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar, Sunny Hostin, Meghan McCain, and Abby Huntsman – seems have forged a firm bond, giving the program some solid stability which is being reflected in its ratings.
Many of The View‘s co-hosts have departed by choice, but this panelist learned she was being let go by reading about it in the news.
After over two decades and 5,000+ shows on the air, the show has seen its share of co-hosts, some who eventually exited the program for other opportunities or sometimes for contentious reasons. High-profile names such as Jenny McCarthy, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Candace Cameron Bure, and Lisa Ling have served as panelists yet ended up moving on and leaving a seat empty for the next co-host.
Now the panel in place seems to be gelling quite nicely. The current team even got the attention of The New York Times, who gave the show a shout out as “The Most Important Political TV Show in America,” solidifying that The View seems to have found its niche.
An unlikely foursome
In 2014, ABC brought on actress Rosie Perez and Nicolle Wallace, who served as former communications chief for George W. Bush, to the panel. The two newcomers joined matriarch Whoopi Goldberg and second-timer Rosie O’Donnell. While the foursome seemed to be an odd mix, network execs were hoping the contrast in personalities would bring spirited talk to the table of The View.
Wallace told Variety in 2015 that though it was a rushed hiring process, she was ready to take on the challenge. “We did one rehearsal show. Presidents practice more than that to throw out a pitch at a minor-league all-star game,” Wallace commented. “The first day, my hair was brown because someone told me it should be brown. By Wednesday, it was back to blonde again, and I was feeling better. I said: ‘I’ll do anything you want. I’ll wear anything you want. But I’m dying my hair back to blonde.’”
When asked why she originally wanted to join the show, Wallace shared that the panelist seat was a coveted position. “Everybody wants to do The View. It’s this iconic show,” she said. “When I worked at the White House, I used to watch the beginning, to see what they were talking about. If a political topic was on their radar, I used it as ammunition with the president or the White House staff.”
Wallace had hoped to bring her political experience to the table when discussing national and global issues. “The day I got the job, it was expressed to me by [Disney/ABC Television Group president] Ben Sherwood that he wanted to make it a place where all the candidates for president had to stop,” she revealed. “I took that assignment to heart and tried to have the kind of political discussions that, while sharp and critical at times, were also fair.”
In the headlines
Despite Wallace’s enthusiasm at being a part of The View, the network decided not to renew her contract the following season. Yet she was never told she wouldn’t be returning.
“They never called me,” Wallace said of ABC, revealing that she had found out she was exiting the show by reading the news in the headlines. “The night [Variety’s] second story ran, they summoned my agent and told me they’d like to consider me for a contributor role, and they also made me an offer at ABC News to do the conventions and debates… They weren’t interested in negotiating with me. It didn’t make sense for me.”
Wallace was surprised by the decision, revealing that she had never been given any negative feedback on her performance as co-host. “I had never had one note from anybody inside the entire organization during the entire season. No one said a word to me,” she shared. “Maybe I should have seen it coming. Not after a single show, a single Hot Topic or a single interview. It was like being invisible. But not in an unpleasant way.”
While on the show, Wallace cultivated a close friendship with Goldberg. “I’ve fallen in love at first sight with three people: my husband, my son and Whoopi Goldberg,” Wallace said on the air when she confirmed her departure, calling Goldberg and fellow co-host Perez the “two of the loves of my life.”
Despite the odd way of discovering she wouldn’t be returning the following season, Wallace had no regrets for her time at the table. “I never thought I would get this job in a million years. I was more surprised to get it than I would have been to not get it,” she said. “I would have been more surprised if they’d kept me around because I am the original political nerd. I have loved being a part of this table. I have loved sitting in this chair — it was never mine but I’m lucky I got to occupy it for a little bit.”