Rosie O'Donnell's Talk Show Canceled by Oprah's OWN Network

Plug pulled on the Chicago-set Rosie Show after one season due to low ratings; host says she's heading back to New York

By Natalie Finn Mar 17, 2012 12:20 AMTags
Rosie O'Donnell, Oprah WinfreyAP Photo/M. Spencer Green

Oprah Winfrey's struggling cable network needed a shot in the arm—but Rosie O'Donnell wasn't it.

The Rosie Show, O'Donnell's first big TV project since leaving The View, has been canceled after one season, OWN confirmed Friday.

"I loved working with Oprah in the amazing city of Chicago," O'Donnell said in a statement. "I was welcomed with open arms and will never forget the kindness of all I encountered. It was a great year for me—I wish the show was able to attract more viewers—but it did not. So I am headed back to my home in New York—with gratitude. On we go!"

And what did O'Donnell's now ex-boss have to say?

"I thank Rosie from the bottom of my heart for joining me on this journey," Winfrey said. "She has been an incredible partner, working to deliver the best possible show every single day. As I have learned in the last 15 months, a new network launch is always a challenge and ratings grow over time as you continue to gather an audience. I'm grateful to Rosie and the dedicated Rosie Show team for giving it their all."

The show's final episode will tape March 20 and air March 30.

Despite Winfrey's apparent commitment to growth, the ratings game was a losing battle for The Rosie Show from day one. The show's first episode, featuring guest Russell Brand, aired Oct. 10 and was watched by a season-high 497,000 viewers, but the numbers steadily declined over time.

As of March 6, the show was averaging 204,000 viewers, according to Variety.

But O'Donnell's brief relocation to Chicago certainly wasn't for nothing: She met fiancée Michelle Rounds at a Starbucks in the Windy City!