A new report alleges that ABC executives botched a plan to fire Rosie Perez from the popular daytime talk show, The View. Perez serves as co-host, alongside Rosie O'Donnell, Whoopi Goldberg, and Nicolle Wallace.
Variety reports that ABC "put the brakes" on a plan to fire Perez, 50, after news broke of her impending departure in mid-January. Perez, the first Latina host on the show, had taken a month-long leave of absence to prepare for her role in Larry David's Broadway play Fish in the Dark. Apparently, ABC planned to tell audiences that Perez would permanently depart from the show to fulfill her other commitments.
However, when news broke of the plan, executives reconsidered.
"At the time, the network wasn't ready to announce the co-host's departure," Variety reports. "According to a source familiar with ABC execs' thinking, fear of an 'an Ann Curry situation' — a reference to NBC's botched firing of the Today anchor in 2012 — led executives to reverse course and keep Perez on the network's 11 a.m. talk show for now."
According to Variety, executives planned to host a farewell for Perez and invite her onto the talk show to explain her departure.
Allegedly, plans to fire Perez went astray when Variety first broke the news, and fellow co-host Rosie O'Donnell, a close friend of Perez, pressed ABC for an explanation. Executives began to worry about the ramifications of firing a Latina host after just four months on the job. They had not begun searching for a replacement.
However, senior executives at the network deny that any plan existed to oust Perez. "The unnamed sources are wrong," said a spokesperson for the network. "As was always the plan, the amazingly talented Rosie Perez took time off to rehearse for her Broadway play. We're eagerly looking forward to having her back on February 3rd. Any speculation to the contrary is simply untrue."
Read the full report at Variety.