News and Analysis

Wendy Williams Reacts To Sherri Shepherd Replacing Her Following Announcement That Her Talk Show Is Officially Canceled
Wendy Williams
Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank

There are no hard feelings between Wendy Williams and her replacement, Sherri Shepherd. Shortly after the announcement was made that Williams’ talk show was being canceled, the 57-year-old host put out a statement wishing Shepherd well plus leaving the door open to return in the distant future.

Her spokesperson, Howard Bragman, explained that Wendy “understands” the decision to cancel “The Wendy Williams Show” and expressed her gratitude to her replacement, Sherri Shepherd, Deadline reported.

“It’s been a challenging time for Wendy as she deals with her health issues. She is incredibly grateful to Debmar-Mercury, to Sherri and everybody else who has supported the show through this time,” Bragman said.

“She, more than anyone, understands the reality of syndicated television — you can’t go to the marketplace and sell a show that’s The Maybe Wendy Show,” the rep continued. “She understands why this decision was made from a business point of view, and she has been assured by Debmar-Mercury that should her health get to a point where she can host again and should her desire be that she hosts again that she would be back on TV at that time.”

“The Wendy Williams Show” is coming to an end in June following Williams’ extended absences, which were due to ongoing health issues. The host has been battling Graves’ disease, an autoimmune disorder.

The talk show swapped in a rotation of guest hosts including Shepherd, who quickly became an audience favorite. Now she’ll be getting her own show in the same coveted daytime slot called “Sherri,” TMZ reported. The new show is slated to premiere in September.

Shepherd also has experience on other talk shows including “The View” and “Dish Nation.”  

“We all have a great love and affinity for Wendy, who grew into a true icon during her 12 incredible seasons as the solo host of a live, daily talk show dishing on ‘Hot Topics’ and interviewing celebrities,” Debmar-Mercury co-presidents said in a statement. 

“Since Wendy is still not available to host the show as she continues on her road to recovery, we believe it is best for our fans, stations and advertising partners to start making this transition now. We hope to be able to work with Wendy again in the future, and continue to wish her a speedy and full recovery.”

Williams has been notably private about her health struggles and only described what she was going through in vague terms. But the talk show host shared a more personal video recently which showed her walking on a Miami beach and shooting down rumors that she was incapacitated and unable to care for herself.

“What do you have to say to those people who think you’re up to whatever it is?” her son Kevin, the person filming, asked his mom. Williams replied, “Excuse me, I am going back stronger.”

“At [57] years old, there are things that happen to people. I would say things usually start about 40 and they go up from there, you know, so you’ve got to eat the right food,” she said, according to Daily Mail.

The talk show mainstay concluded the video by reiterating her commitment to staying healthy and working on recovering. 

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