The comedian has opened up to the Hollywood Reporter about the decision, which she says has been several years in the making.
“When you’re a creative person, you constantly need to be challenged – and as great as this show is, and as fun as it is, it’s just not a challenge anymore,” DeGeneres said in an initial statement.
DeGeneres informed her staff of the decision yesterday (May 11) and will sit down with Oprah Winfrey to further talk about the news on Ellen tomorrow (May 13).
“I was going to stop after season 16,” DeGeneres told the publication of her desire to end the show.
She continued: “That was going to be my last season and they wanted to sign for four more years and I said I’d sign for maybe for one. They were saying there was no way to sign for one.
Today we’re starting a new chapter. pic.twitter.com/PvpZXnXLv5
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) September 21, 2020
“So, we [settled] on three more years and I knew that would be my last. That’s been the plan all along. And everybody kept saying, even when I signed, ‘You know, that’s going to be 19, don’t you want to just go to 20? It’s a good number’. So is 19.”
Last year, Ellen DeGeneres addressed claims of a “toxic work environment”, after past and present staff members had faced allegations of “racism and intimidation”.
“Things happened here that should never have happened,” DeGeneres said during a monologue at the start of the new series’ first episode.
“As you may have heard this summer there were allegations of a toxic work environment at our show, and then there was an investigation,” DeGeneres added. “I learned that things happened here that never should have happened. I take that very seriously, and I want to say I’m so sorry to the people who were affected.
“I know that I’m in a position of privilege and power, and I realise that with that comes responsibility, and I take responsibility for what happens at my show.”