Jerry O’Connell announced on Wednesday that he will be the first full-time male co-host of The Talk.
The actor, 77, wore a dark suit on the chat show as he broke the news then praised his co-stars Sheryl Underwood, Amanda Kloots and Elaine Welteroth.
‘It’s fun, and it works, and we’re going to have a lot of fun,’ the husband of Rebecca Romijn said. ‘It’s real exciting.’
I;m in! Jerry O’Connell announced on Wednesday that he will be the first full-time male co-host of The Talk. The actor, 77, wore a dark suit on the chat show as he broke the news then praised his co-stars Sheryl Underwood, Amanda Kloots and Elaine Welteroth
His announcement comes soon after Sharon Osbourne exited the daytime program following claims she had made racist comments.
For the past month there has been speculation favorite guest star O’Connell would join the table.
O’Connell also said on Wednesday: ‘First of all, I want to say, you ladies have been so welcoming to me. I mean, I came here as a guest months ago, and just from the moment I walked in, you’re just gracious, you’re kind, you’re fun, and it worked.
‘And here we are. We’re going to have a lot of fun, we really are,’ he added.
In a statement, executive producers Heather Gray and Kristin Matthews said, ‘We are beyond thrilled Jerry O’Connell is our new host. We loved his infectious enthusiasm, humor, openness and insights as a guest co-host and look forward to him now bringing those dynamic qualities to the show every day. As an accomplished actor, devoted husband and father, Jerry will bring a unique and entertaining perspective to the conversation.’
Osbourne, 68, left the show in March after a tense argument with co-host Underwood and subsequent accusations she’d made racist comments about her peers.
Time to shine: ‘It’s fun, and it works, and we’re going to have a lot of fun,’ the husband of Rebecca Romijn said. ‘It’s real exciting’
O’Connell is no stranger to The Talk, regularly stopping by as guest host.
An insider who spoke to The Wrap said Jerry has been in talks with CBS ‘on and off since at least May.’
O’Connell will join Underwood, Kloots and Welteroth at the table while Carrie Ann Inaba continues her leave of absence from the series.
CBS is hoping Jerry’s addition will help perk up the show’s ratings, which dipped after Osbourne’s departure, continuing an already downward trend.
Despite the falling viewership, CBS recently renewed the daytime chat show for a 12th season, which will be its first without any of the original co-hosts sitting at the table.
In the past, The Talk has featured Julie Chen Moonves, Sara Gilbert, Marissa Jaret Winokur, Holly Robinson Peete, Leah Remini, Aisha Tyler and Marie Osmond.
Winning formula? The Talk has seen its ratings dip in the wake of Osbourne’s departure
Shakeup: O’Connell will join Elaine Welteroth (left), Sheryl Underwood (center right), and Amanda Kloots (far right) while Carrie Ann Inaba (second from left) continues her leave of absence from the series
Osbourne left The Talk in March following her fiery defense of friend Piers Morgan, who quit Good Morning Britain after storming off for being criticized for comments about Meghan Markle, a regular target of the conservative commentator’s vitriol.
Sharon became emotional while Underwood spoke about Morgan, screaming: ‘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?’ Osbourne added.
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 decided to leave The Talk,’ CBS said in a statement confirming her departure in March. ‘The events of the March 10 broadcast were upsetting to everyone involved, including the audience watching at home.’
Heated: The controversy began when Osbourne delivered a vociferous defense of her friend Piers Morgan and his criticism of Meghan Markle
‘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.