Osbourne's controversial defense of friend Piers Morgan's critical comments about Meghan Markle resulted in her walking out.
Sharon Osbourne has decided to leave The Talk, a daytime talk show, after more than a decade. The television host's decision to step down comes days after her heated on-air conversation about race with co-host Sheryl Underwood. According to TMZ, the longtime panelist continuously defended her friend Piers Morgan and claimed that his coverage of Meghan Markle's tell-all interview with Ophrah Winfrey was not rooted in racism. The argument that ensued on the March 10 episode left Sheryl in tears and ended up sparking a network investigation into allegations that Sharon had made multiple racist comments to her co-workers over the years.
"Sharon Osbourne has decided to leave The Talk," revealed CBS in a statement according to The Hollywood Reporter. "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. We also did not find any evidence that CBS executives orchestrated the discussion or blindsided any of the hosts. 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," it continued.
Piers Morgan Slams Sharon Osbourne Treatment By CBS, Claims They Caved To Cancel Culture https://t.co/1xsNpdYSbF— Deadline Hollywood (@DEADLINE) March 28, 2021
"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," it read. Sharon's exit from The Talk is similar to that of Morgan, whom Sharon controversially defended publically despite his critical comments about Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex. During the interview, Meghan told Oprah that she was discouraged from seeking mental health treatment after she confided in them that she had been having suicidal thoughts.
According to New York Post, Morgan examined this piece of information on Good Morning Britain and said that he did not believe Meghan's account. When his co-host chastised him, he reportedly stormed off. "I understand that you [Morgan] don't like Meghan Markle, you've made it so clear a number of times on this program. And I understand that you've got a personal relationship with Meghan Markle, or had one and she cut you off. Has she said anything about you since she cut you off? I don't think she has, but yet you continue to trash her." said co-host Alex Beresford according to CNN. At this point, Morgan walked off the set saying, "Okay, I'm done with this, sorry, no, sorry... see you later, sorry, can't do this."
As for the heated conversation that Sharon had, she demanded co-host Sheryl, "Educate me, tell me when you have heard him say racist things… 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?" When asked to respond to people who claimed it was racist to defend the comments made by Morgan, Sharon said, "For me, at 68 years of age to have to turn around and say ‘I ain’t racist’ – what’s it got to do with me? How could I be racist about anybody? How could I be racist about anybody or anything in my life? How can I?"
Following this, the show went into a two-week hiatus and Sharon released a statement apologizing for the incident, reports Rolling Stone. "To anyone of color that I offended and/or to anyone that feels confused or let down by what I said, I am truly sorry," she wrote. "I panicked, felt blindsided, got defensive, and allowed my fear and horror of being accused of being racist take over." But during the hiatus, former co-host Holly Robinson Peete accused the 68-year-old of complaining to producers about Peete being "stood ghetto." This apparently led to her dismissal from The Talk. Another former co-host Leah Remini came forward and claimed that Osbourne had made racist remarks against former co-host Julie Chen and expressed homophobic remarks about the actress and the show's creator Sara Gilbert. While Osbourne denied the allegations through her spokesperson, she has now stepped down from her position like her pal Morgan.