Spotlight on Barbara Walters
According to Barbara, Star decided she was going to announce her departure on June 29. On June 27, however, Star announced live on the show that she was leaving The View. "I thought she was just telling people two days early, so I got up and said, 'Let's everybody give her a standing ovation,'" Barbara says. "Suddenly, I see Bill Geddie, my co-executive producer, and I think he's going to burst a blood vessel."
What Barbara didn't know, she says, is that Star gave an interview days earlier to People magazine, accusing Barbara of lying. Star told People she wasn't leaving The View because of bad ratings but because of Rosie O'Donnell. Barbara says Rosie was hired to replace Meredith Vieira after it had been established that Star was leaving the show. "It wasn't because of Rosie," Barbara says. "Had Star stayed, we probably wouldn't have hired Rosie because the truth is that Rosie and Star had a bad relationship and we would not have been able to keep both of them."
Barbara says she took Star's interview with People very personally. "I had so many years with Star," Barbara says. "I had such affection for her, and now I was so furious with her. I thought, 'I didn't do this to her. She did this to herself.' She could have left with any kind of grace."
Star's unexpected early announcement was her last day on The View. Barbara says that while she thought the situation would diffuse, the network decided they didn't want Star to return.