The Ellen DeGeneres Show will reportedly come to an end next year, after nearly two decades on the air.
According to reports from Variety, the long-running talk show will officially come to an end after the upcoming 2021-22 season. DeGeneres has hosted the series since 2003, meaning the show will have run for 19 seasons by the time the final episode airs.
Since its start nearly two decades ago, the show has been a major fixture of the daytime TV landscape throughout its run, also inspiring a number of spinoff series including shows like Ellen’s Game of Games, The Masked Dancer, Family Game Fight, and Ellen’s Greatest Night of Giveaways.
Even though this announcement may have been unexpected for some folks, the move to end the series is not exactly surprising, for a few reasons, including the fact that DeGeneres’ current contract ends in 2022. There had already been rumors when she extended her contract in 2019 that she was planning to end the series at that time, though she ultimately signed for another three years.
In those past three years, allegations of a toxic work environment have plagued the show and its host, leading to a ratings drop and, seemingly, the show’s eventual demise. But of course, the host isn’t citing this controversy as her reason for throwing in the towel.
“I was going to stop after season 16,” DeGeneres said in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter. “That was going to be my last season and they wanted to sign for four more years and I said I’d sign for maybe for one. They were saying there was no way to sign for one. ‘We can’t do that with the affiliates and the stations need more of a commitment.’ So, we [settled] on three more years and I knew that would be my last. That was the plan all along.”
The end of an era.