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Posted by on May 25, 2007 in Arts & Entertainment, Media | 30 comments

Rosie O’Donnell’s Explosive Exit From “The View” (UPDATED)

UPDATE: Rosie O’Donnell will not return to ABC’s “The View.” Basically, a few weeks ago she quit but planned to be back. This time she quit sooner:

In a statement today, Brian Frons, the president of Disney-ABC’s Daytime Television Group, said, “We had hoped that Rosie would be with us until the end of her contract three weeks from now, but Rosie has informed us that she would like an early leave. Therefore, we part ways, thank her for her tremendous contribution to ‘The View’ and wish her well.”

Barbara Walters, the show’s creator and co-executive producer, said, “I brought Rosie to the show. Rosie contributed to one of our most exciting and successful years at ‘The View.’ I am most appreciative. Our close and affectionate relationship will not change.”

In her statement, O’Donnell said, “I’m extremely grateful. It’s been an amazing year and I love all three women.”

Some may wonder about THAT.

Here’s what we wrote earlier:

“The View” has been anything but tranquil and soothing these days.

In our last chapter, Rosie O’Donnell she was moving on from the program for which she helped boost ratings after a media-mega-saturated feud with Donald Trump and some public comments by her about Trump that left some jaws dropping (including by some reports host Barbara Walters’).

But her latest fiery on the air clash with co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck on Wednesday not only seemed intensely personal, but this report in the New York Post suggests the ill-feeling was indeed not feigned:

ROSIE O’Donnell left “The View” with a bang, not a whimper, following her on-air smackdown with co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck on Wednesday.

Yesterday, Rosie’s chief writer, Janette Barber, was allegedly escorted from the building after she was caught drawing moustaches on photographs of Hasselbeck that hang in the “View” studios.

So, you see? Daffy Duck isn’t the only who pulls the old moustache-on-the picture routine. But it’s clear this was NO JOKE:

The Post’s Adam Buckman reports ABC confirmed in a statement only that “photographs at ‘The View’s’ offices were defaced. Rosie O’Donnell was not in the building. ABC Legal and Human Resources are investigating the matter.” Barber is an old friend of O’Donnell who worked with her years ago on “The Rosie O’Donnell Show.”

There were also rumors O’Donnell was so angry after her argument with Hasselbeck that she trashed her dressing room, although ABC denied the tantrum.

Meanwhile, “The View” went on yesterday without O’Donnell, who was taking a previously planned day off to celebrate partner Kelli Carpenter’s 40th birthday.

And what was all the fuss about? You can watch the 10-minute segment below, which starts off with another co-host listing a long laundry list of complaints about President George Bush. Watch the faces throughout of O’Donnell (the liberal) and Hasselbeck (the conservative):

And so you have the two ostensible issues: (1) Why didn’t you defend me and say you don’t believe them and (2) It’s not my role to explain your insinuations.

Bigger issue: the exchange typifies what has happened to political discussion in America, where both sides yell and scream at and over each other. It’s like a broadcaster on AM radio hoping his AM-broadcast program can be heard on FM radios.

Also: Rosie O’Donnell’s personal blog.

UPDATE II: Be sure to check out some other thoughts on The View’s big confrontation:
Yeah Politics.
The Anchoress
Wizbang Pop
Ann Althouse
Rachel Skylar at Huffington Post