The Talk is making headlines again for controversial reasons, with the buzz this time centered on co-host Sharon Osbourne and comments that she allegedly made about former co-hosts Julie Chen and Sara Gilbert. Osbourne is currently the last original Talk host standing after Chen departed in 2018 and Gilbert tearfully departed in 2019, and fellow former co-host Leah Remini has spoken up to claim that Osbourne made racist and homophobic comments about Chen and Gilbert.
Leah Remini, known for speaking out on controversial topics by this point in her career, is reportedly one of multiple sources to tell Yashar Ali for his newsletter that Sharon Osbourne referred to Julie Chen, who is Chinese American, as "wonton" and "slanty eyes" and executive producer Sara Gilbert, who is a lesbian, as "pussy licker" and "fish eater." Remini also claims that Osbourne referred to Chen as "pillow-talking with our boss," in reference to then-CBS head and Chen's husband Les Moonves.
Julie Chen appeared on The Talk with Sharon Osbourne for the first eight seasons of the series, while Sara Gilbert stuck around the series through the end of Season 9. Leah Remini was a Talk co-host for one season, with Remini, Holly Robinson Peete, and Marissa Jaret Winokur all leaving the series before Season 2. Sources claim that Osbourne has a history of bullying including racist language.
Although Sharon Osbourne has been on the airwaves as a Talk co-host for more than a decade at this point, she became the subject of scrutiny recently when she rose to the defense of friend Piers Morgan, who left Good Morning Britain in the wake of comments made about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. This led to a heated debate between Osbourne and current co-host Sheryl Underwood, in which she told Underwood not to cry.
Shortly thereafter, Holly Robinson Peete took to Twitter to make an accusation of her own about Sharon Osbourne, posting:
Holly Robinson Peete followed up on Twitter by making it clear that she loved being on The Talk, but "sometimes awesome gifts come in humiliating packages." She also made it clear that she misses working with Leah Remini. As for Remini, she also alleges that Sharon Osbourn used Italian slurs to refer to her, including "wap" and "Guinea." A clip has resurfaced online of Osbourne saying that Remini's style of speech is "ghetto."
In response to the new allegations from Leah Remini and sources, Sharon Osbourne's publicist Howard Bragman released a statement, saying:
The only thing worse than a disgruntled former employee is a disgruntled former talk show host. For 11 years Sharon has been kind, collegial and friendly with her hosts as evidenced by throwing them parties, inviting them to her home in the UK and other gestures of kindness too many to name. Sharon is disappointed but unfazed and hardly surprised by the lies, the recasting of history and the bitterness coming out at this moment. She will survive this, as she always has and her heart will remain open and good, because she refuses to let others take her down. She thanks her family, friends and fans for standing by her and knowing her true nature
At the time of writing, neither Julie Chen nor Sara Gilbert has reacted to Leah Remini's claims or the current controversy surrounding Sharon Osbourne on social media. The Talk is currently on a brief hiatus so that an internal review of the episode that featured the argument Osbourne and Holly Robinson Peete can be conducted. For now, only time will tell whether Osbourne still has a future at The Talk or if The Talk will be looking for another new co-host in the not-too-distant future.