On March 26, CBS released a statement reading, "The events of the March 10 broadcast were upsetting to everyone involved, including the audience watching at home." It went on, "As part of our review, we concluded that Sharon's behavior toward her co-hosts during the March 10 episode did not align with our values for a respectful workplace."
Sheryl, 57, is now opening up about her "traumatic" experience with Sharon, 68, whom she says has not contacted her since they were on set together. The comedian told all in a three-part series on Sheryl Underwood Radio, titled "Sharon Walks Away," which she released from April 2 to 4.
Filmed about one week after Sharon left the show, Sheryl looked back through her phone to confirm Sharon has not reached out to her. "No, OK, I've been looking through my phone," she said. "No. I can go back as far as I can go. No."
Yet, Sharon reiterated to The Daily Mail on Tuesday, April 6, that she had reached out to Sheryl. The outlet published screenshots of text messages from the former America's Got Talent judge, which have not been independently verified by E! News.
"I not only sent these messages to Sheryl but I apologized to her in person in her dressing room," Sharon told The Daily Mail. "Why are you saying I never apologized Sheryl? What are you trying to do to me?... Why are you trying to destroy my reputation? Just be honest. Tell me."
E! News has reached out to her rep for comment.
Sheryl also claimed she hasn't heard from any of her other castmates in the aftermath of the episode, as the show went on hiatus until April 12. "No, not personally," she said, noting that she has been surprised by how many people have reached out with similar experiences. "I was startled by those people and their stories of telling me, 'This happened to me,'" she said. "I'm going to ask the people, 'Can I name names?'"
On the podcast, Sheryl was asked how she felt about Sharon's public apology letter, despite not hearing personally from her. The wife of Ozzy Osbourne tweeted on March 11 to say, "To anyone of color that I offended and/or to anyone that feels confused or let down by what I said, I am truly sorry."
Sheryl said she "felt an odd feeling about that," adding, "The issue is, for me, it's about trust," but she didn't seem keen to share any other thoughts: "I don't want to add to the chatter in a negative way that we're not coming with positive solutions and trust and growth and evolution."
She said she apologized to Sharon in person. "Did it on the air, did it afterwards, did it in between the Thursday shows."
The Bold and the Beautiful star continued, "The first thing I thought was, whatever role I played, intentionally or unintentionally, I am going to ask you to forgive me and accept my apology for this misunderstanding… And I was still not getting back what you would look for… and that was disappointing."
She feels that Sharon did not get "the best advice and counsel" on how to handle the situation. Sheryl believes "if this had played out differently," she doesn't think Sharon would have left The Talk.
After learning that Sharon was leaving, she knew her former colleague had to do the "best" thing for herself and her family, though she realizes haters call her a "sucker" for wishing her well.
In retrospect, she regrets that the situation happened at all. She reminds herself, "This was going to happen out of my control."
In describing her relationship with Sharon, she called her a "fast friend" prior to the controversy, saying, "You're talking about 10 years sitting next to someone… I would get advice from her. She'd been in the business a long time... And remember when I said, ‘I do not know you to be a racist. I know you doing the work and being on the journey.'"
Sheryl later revealed, "I still love the Osbournes, from what I've known of them."
As she put it, "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.'"
But, she clarified, "I'm not saying I liked being treated the way I was treated... I'm very disappointed. And I'm trying to navigate my feelings about that, 'cause it was a trauma. Remember, I said I'm PTSD, in shock, in slow-motion."
However, she seemed to approve of how The Talk team addressed the controversy.
"I was pleasantly surprised at how this was handled. And that this was solution-driven. And that this was healing-driving," she said. "I was pleasantly surprised to get down to the bottom of things, so that we could correct things."
The Odd Couple alum went on, "That's why I felt so open to be able to say, ‘What is it that you need from me?' And to be able to come back to work Thursday. We taped two shows on Thursday," seemingly referring to March 11.
Sheryl gave further insight into the atmosphere on set after the March 10 incident by explaining her mood when she came back to work: "While there was a little bit of apprehension… I was still telling myself, ‘Sheryl, this is not as hurtful as you thought. It still hurts but it seems like they're trying to get down to the bottom of something.' It didn't seem to be as odd as I felt."
The Talk returns April 12.