Drew Barrymore Delays Talk Show’s Return Following Backlash, Offers ‘Deepest Apologies’

TV Shows

The Drew Barrymore Show won’t return with a new season tomorrow, Monday, September 18, after all. After intense backlash, host Drew Barrymore has reversed her decision and opted not to bring the show back until the end of the WGA strike.

“I have listened to everyone, and I am making the decision to pause the show’s premiere until the strike is over,” Barrymore wrote on Instagram today. “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.”

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

The backtracking on The Drew Barrymore Show’s Season 4 premiere comes one week after Barrymore announced that she was restarting production on the talk show. In an Instagram post on September 10, the Santa Clarita Diet alum said that she “own[ed] this choice” and emphasized that she was in compliance with strike rules.

Filming for unscripted Season 4 episodes started on Monday, with CBS Media Ventures explaining that Barrymore wasn’t running afoul of the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike either. Writers for the talk show joined a WGA protest outside the show’s home base at CBS Broadcast Center in New York City that day, as two WGA-supporting audience members reported getting booted from the Drew Barrymore Show audience.

And on Friday, September 15, Barrymore posted — and then deleted — an Instagram video in which she “deeply” apologized to writers and unions but also defended her stance, saying there were “other people’s jobs on the line.”

That video did little to placate other Hollywood stars. “Drew Barrymore would like you to know that undermining union solidarity at the most crucial moment in Hollywood labor history makes her the victim,” tweeted The West Wing alum Bradley Whitford.

On Sunday’s Instagram post, however, commenters commended the 48-year-old. “See, there was something you could do — stand in solidarity with your writers on strike,” one commenter wrote. “Thank you for doing the right thing.”

Sherri and The Jennifer Hudson Show are still returning on September 18. Sherri is not a WGA-covered show, so it’s not violating strike rules by coming back. The Jennifer Hudson Show, however, is a struck production as it employs WGA writers. The View never stopped production after the strike began. A struck production, it has been violating strike rules for months and WGA has often picketed its filming location since May.

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