Saturday, April 10, 2021

Sheryl Underwood Reacts to Sharon Osbourne’s Exit From ‘The Talk’ Following Fallout

*Sheryl Underwood has broken her silence on Sharon Osbourne’s exit from “The Talk.”

Speaking on her podcast titled “Sharon Walks Away,” Underwood addressed her heated on-air discussion with Osbourne about Piers Morgan’s criticism of Meghan Markle. The emotional conversation prompted CBS to cancel several live shows and launch an investigation into claims of workplace toxicity and racism on set.

Osbourne has since been booted from the show and she and Sherly have not spoken. Per Deadline, in the first of the three The Talk-related episodes, Underwood said she regrets the discussion that happened in the first place, noting that the moment “was going to happen out of my control.” 

READ MORE: Sherri Shepherd Says Sharon Osbourne Crossed a Line with Sheryl Underwood

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During the March 10 episode of “The Talk,” Osbourne had an emotional breakdown while defending her friend Piers Morgan against accusations that he’s racist for criticizing Meghan Markle. 

“Did I like everything he said? Did I agree with what he said? No,” Osbourne said about Morgan’s commentary following Prince Harry and Meghan’s bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey. “Because it’s his opinion. It’s not my opinion…I support him for his freedom of speech, and he’s my friend.”

She continued, “I’m not racist…I don’t care what color or what religion anyone is. Are you a nice person? That’s what I judge you on.”

Underwood responded by asking: “What would you say to people who may feel that while you’re standing by your friend, it appears you gave validation or safe haven to something that he has uttered that is racist, even if you don’t agree?”

Osbourne began to cry and rant about it being unfair that she is being labeled a racist for defending Morgan.

“I very much feel like I’m about to be put in the electric chair because I have a friend, who many people think is a racist, so that makes me a racist?” she continued. “What does it gotta do with me?”

She then demanded that Underwood explain what Piers said that was racist.

“I will ask you again Sheryl, I’ve been asking you during the break and I’m asking you again, and don’t try and cry cos if anyone should be crying it should be me,” Osbourne said. “Educate me. Tell me when you have heard him say racist things.”

Underwood responded that “it is not the exact words of racism, it’s the implication and the reaction to it.”

“To not want to address that because she is a Black woman, and to try to dismiss it or to make it seem less than what it is that’s what makes it racist,” Underwood said. “But right now, I’m talking to a woman I believe is my friend and I don’t want anybody here to watch this and think we are attacking you for being racist.”

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Underwood made clear on her podcast that Osbourne has not reached out to her directly to apologize. She also addressed Osbourne’s previous claim that CBS executives set up the conversation about Morgan to blindside her.  

“In my gut, I thought this was going to go left,” Underwood recalled. “And so I wanted to put it in its proper order, be very calm, but there were a few people that criticized me on that — ‘Why do you give any f—- about somebody’s feelings? They give no f—- about yours.’ It’s not about the reaction of the person, it’s about me and who I’m trying to evolve and mature to be.” 

Underwood also admitted that when she joined “The Talk” for its second season in 2011, several colleagues warned her about Osbourne’s racist personality.

“I automatically just fell in love with her because I just like her. And I heard things and I was like, ‘They got nothing to do with me.’ My thing is I’m going to get to know you first,” Underwood said.

“I had heard things, and I got phone calls of this and that and so what I said to those people, I said, ‘Thank you for the information.’ Because listen, in this business you’ve got all types of personalities, right?” she continued.

Underwood did not explain what she heard about Osbourne but said those things were later confirmed. 

Despite the fallout, Underwood appears to still have love for Osbourne and her family.

“I still love the Osbournes, from what I’ve known of them,” she said. “I don’t know anything other than what I’ve experienced with them, and this thing that has happened is disappointing to me.”

“And maybe people don’t want to hear me say, ‘I still love the Osbournes.’ I’m not saying I liked being treated the way I was treated,” she added. “I’m very disappointed. And I’m just trying to navigate my feelings about that because it was a trauma.” 

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is a screenwriter and freelance reporter from Chicago -- currently living in Los Angeles and covering A-list entertainment for various outlets, including Emmys.com. She has worked for: Miramax, MTV & VH1, The Jim Henson Company, Hallmark Channel, Paramount Pictures, and for iconic indie film producer Roger Corman.

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