Why did Elaine Welteroth leave 'The Talk'? CBS left with 3 hosts after her exit

'When the music changes, so must your dance,' says Welteroth, leaves the show with just 3 co-hosts after series of departures ahead of Sep 13 opener


                            Why did Elaine Welteroth leave 'The Talk'? CBS left with 3 hosts after her exit
Elaine Welteroth is the latest 'The Talk' host to leave CBS (Leon Bennett/Getty Images)
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'The Talk' is continuing to lose co-hosts after Elaine Welteroth confirmed she was leaving the show. On August 31, the former Teen Vogue editor announced she was exiting the show, just weeks after Carrie Ann Inaba. It means 'The Talk' is now down to three hosts: Sheryl Underwood, Amanda Kloots and the recently hired Jerry O’Connell. CBS is now reportedly rushing to fill at least one vacancy, with the program's 2021-22 season due to kick off on September 13.

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Welteroth was roped into the CBS show in December 2020, in a bid to get more political and compete with 'The View'. Since then though, things have only begun to go downhill. In March, Sharon Osbourne left the show, sparking concerns of cancellation due to poor ratings without any star power. Things only got worse for CBS, as Osbourne reportedly wanted to sue the show over her exit. 

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If replacing Osbourne was a massive challenge, CBS now has to deal with finding two replacements in a matter of weeks. It's a massive uphill task for a program that is struggling to retain talent. Since season 1 was released in 2010, the CBS show has gone through 14 hosts, with Underwood being the longest-serving member of the panel. Why did Welteroth leave the show after just 1 season? That's a difficult question to answer.

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Why did Welteroth leave 'The Talk'?

Unlike Osbourne, Welteroth doesn't leave under a cloud of conspiracy or chaos. Her departure was relatively low-key, with a formal statement from her, and the show, devoid of any significant details. "I’m proud of how I represented myself and my community. But as I always say: When the music changes, so must your dance! I will miss my talented co-hosts and crew and I wish them the very best," she said in a statement. "I’m excited to continue these necessary conversations in my work and to share my upcoming creative projects soon," Welteroth added. 

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From the statement, we can assume she decided to put her other projects on priority, of which she has a few. Welteroth is currently serving as a judge on 'Project Runaway', due to air in October. Her memoir 'More Than Enough' is currently being turned into a TV series by Paramount, after it became a highly successful book. Welteroth is also serving as a Consulting Editor-at-Large for 'In The Know', a short-form video network by Verizon. She clearly has a lot to keep her busy, so it may seem like a little surprise she put 'The Talk' in the backseat.

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The real reason for her departure though could be linked to Osbourne. In July, audio leaked of Welteroth consoling Osbourne on the sets of 'The Talk', which was allegedly recorded by someone from Osbourne's team. That recording led to a storm of controversy around Welteroth, which she called "disheartening". One insider told Page Six this controversy "did not sit well with CBS brass," which led to her ouster, while others said it wasn't the cause. We can only speculate until we get the full picture from Welteroth herself. 

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"It is an absolute honor for anyone, but especially a young Black woman, to occupy space on-air where our perspectives are largely underrepresented," she said in her statement. CBS confirmed her departure with a statement of its own, saying, "We wish Elaine all the best. We are grateful for her passion, enthusiasm, and insight she brought to the show daily. Her openness and meaningful conversations were attributes we admired and always appreciated."

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Who will replace Welteroth?

That's the big question, to which we don't have an answer just yet. It's unclear if Welteroth's departure was a sudden move or one that was planned. If it was planned, CBS would have likely been searching for a host long before the announcement was made. However, that doesn't seem to be the case. The Hollywood Reporter said that "CBS hopes to have at least one new co-host in place by the season opener in two weeks." 

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It's an ominous sign that things aren't well with 'The Talk'. Given the rate of hosts exiting, it's unclear if anyone is actually willing to fill in the vacancies. Kloots joined the show in January 2021 alongside Welteroth, whereas O'Connell was confirmed only in July. With just two weeks to go, it may seem like a stretch to find a replacement. CBS has not commented on the matter, so once again we can only speculate.  We should have an answer in a week or two, given that 'The Talk' will air on September 13. Whoever CBS roles in will certainly have big shoes to fill. 

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