Drew Barrymore Reverses Decision About Resuming Show, Other Talk Shows Follow Suit

After intense criticism from the WGA, striking writers, and social media, Drew Barrymore reversed her decision to start airing new episodes of The Drew Barrymore Show. Fresh episodes of the CBS talk show were scheduled to air starting today, September 18.

“I have listened to everyone, and I am making the decision to pause the show’s premiere until the strike is over,” wrote Barrymore in a statement posted to Instagram. “I have no words to express my deepest apologies to anyone I have hurt and, of course, to our incredible team who works on the show and has made it what it is today. We really tried to find our way forward. And I truly hope for a resolution for the entire industry very soon.”

Some Other Talk Shows Paused Production After Drew Barrymore's Statement

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Image Credit: Wiki Commons, By Fuzheado – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0.

A spokesperson for CBS Media Ventures wrote to Variety in a statement, “We support Drew’s decision to pause the show’s return and understand how complex and difficult this process has been for her.”

As previously reported, Barrymore posted an Instagram video in which she says she wanted to “own a decision” about resuming production on The Drew Barrymore Show, which employees three striking WGA writers. The video is no longer available on Barrymore's Instagram.

The Jennifer Hudson Show was also supposed to return today, but Variety reports that the talk show has paused production following Barrymore's domino effect statement. “Hudson’s nationally syndicated show, which is covered by the WGA, had been planned to begin its season without writers, and intended to resume WGA writers once a new contract is in place,” writes Variety. The Talk, starring Sheryl Underwood, Amanda Kloots, Jerry O'Connell, Akbar Gbaja-Biamila, and Natalie Morales, also planned on returning on September 18 but decided to hit the pause button. The Kelly Clarkson Show has yet to announce a premiere date and likely won't anytime soon after Barrymore's statement. Bill Maher announced previously that he intended for Real Time with Bill Maher to return without his WGA writers, but he received a lot of backlash and, like Barrymore, reversed his decision.

Talk shows such as Sherri Shepherd's Sherri will still move forward with new episodes because the WGA does not consider it a “struck show.” Live With Kelly and Mark and Tamron Hall Show does not have WGA writers and will also continue airing new episodes.

Variety reports that the WGA canceled all planned pickets of The Drew Barrymore Show following her statement. Instead, striking guild members will picket The View, which continues to air new episodes without its WGA writers. 

In an email to its members, the WGA writes, “The WGA and AMPTP now have a confirmed schedule to bargain this week, starting on Wednesday. You might not hear from us in the coming days while we are negotiating, but know that our focus is getting a fair deal for writers as soon as possible. We’ll reach out again when there is something of significance to report.”