Sharon Osbourne claims CBS ‘blindsided’ her when she was asked live on The Talk about her tweet supporting Piers Morgan – as network launches probe into her bust up with Sheryl Underwood
- Osbourne said she was used ‘like a lamb held out for slaughter’ by the network
- She claims she was left out of planning the segment for the first time in 11 years and the topic of conversation was only mentioned to her minutes before it aired
- She blamed CBS for the on-screen row as she claims network executives ordered producers to get her co-hosts to ‘blindside’ her with questions about her tweet
- The 68-year-old launched into a passionate defense of her friend Piers Morgan on Wednesday’s show one day after she tweeted her support of him
- She faced a backlash and accusations of racism, before issuing a statement Friday apologizing ‘to anyone of colour that I offended’
- CBS announced Friday it launched an internal review into Wednesday’s show
- Morgan came under fire over comments he made on British show Good Morning Britain Monday about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s interview with Oprah
- In the interview, Meghan said her mental health became so bad while they were living in the UK as senior working Royals she ‘didn’t want to be alive any more’
- Morgan said he ‘didn’t believe a word’ Meghan said live on air Monday morning and Tuesday he quit the show
Sharon Osbourne has claimed CBS ‘blindsided’ her when she was asked live on The Talk about her support for Piers Morgan, as the network announced it has launched a probe into her bust up with co-host Sheryl Underwood.
Osbourne said she was used ‘like a lamb held out for slaughter’ by the network as she claims she was left out of planning the segment for the first time in 11 years and the topic of conversation was only mentioned to her minutes before it aired.
The 68-year-old had launched into a passionate defense of her friend Morgan on Wednesday’s show, one day after she tweeted her support saying he was ‘speaking your truth.’
Morgan came under fire over comments he made on British show Good Morning Britain Monday about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s bombshell interview with Oprah.
In the interview, the Duchess of Sussex said her mental health became so bad while they were living in the UK as senior working Royals she ‘didn’t want to be alive any more’.
Morgan said he ‘didn’t believe a word’ Meghan said live on air Monday morning sparking more than 41,000 viewer complaints to watchdog Ofcom, which ultimately led to his exit from the show.
Osbourne and Underwood got into a row on The Talk Wednesday over the saga with the Osborne arguing Morgan was just expressing an opinion and questioning where he had been racist.
After she too faced a backlash and accusations of racism, she issued a statement after Friday apologizing ‘to anyone of colour that I offended and/or to anyone that feels confused or let down’.
Sharon Osbourne has claimed CBS ‘blindsided’ her when she was asked live on The Talk about her support for Piers Morgan, as the network announced it has launched a probe into her bust up with co-host Sheryl Underwood. Pictured the incident on Wednesday’s show
Osborne has since spoken out to blame CBS for the on-screen row as she claims network executives ordered producers to get her co-hosts to ‘blindside’ her with questions about her tweet.
She told Variety Friday night she was not prepared in advance for the controversial conversation while she suggests others around her were aware of the topic far in advance, with her co-host coming out with a card full of questions.
‘I blame the network for it. I was blindsided, totally blindsided by the whole situation,’ she said.
‘In my 11 years, this was the first time I was not involved with the planning of the segment.’
Osbourne said the first she knew about the discussion was just eight minutes before it started when a showrunner asked if it was OK if they asked her about Morgan.
She said she responded ‘sure, they can ask me whatever’ but was then ‘caught off guard’ by what Underwood asked.
‘I get on there, I say my piece and Sheryl [Underwood] turns around straight-faced, looks at me and is reading from a card with questions,’ she said.
‘I was just so hurt, caught off guard and stunned by what I was being asked and not prepared.’
Osbourne said she was ‘in shock’ and felt like she was facing a ‘firing squad.’
‘I was honestly in shock. I felt like I was in front of a firing squad. I felt like a lamb held out for slaughter… They had me there for 20 minutes,’ she said.
Osbourne said she ‘begged them to stop’ and change the subject when the show went to break as the exchange became heated and she began crying.
‘I’m a big girl. I’m a professional. However CBS blindsided me. I don’t know why they did it to me. The showrunners told me it came from executives to do this to me,’ she said.
Osbourne said she was used ‘like a lamb held out for slaughter’ by the network as she claims she was left out of planning the segment for the first time in 11 years and the topic of conversation was only mentioned to her minutes before it aired
Osbourne added that she is a ‘work in progress and is ‘willing to learn’ from the incident.
‘I want to make this world a better place, but I don’t like being put in a situation I’m not prepared for and fired questions at me,’ she said.
‘I felt like I was on a witness stand with two prosecutors on either side of me. You want to ask me questions? I’m a team player.
‘Let me know what the questions are so I can prepare. I’m an open book to everyone.’
Osbourne’s criticism of CBS came the same day the network announced an internal review had been launched into Wednesday’s show.
‘We are committed to a diverse, inclusive and respectful workplace,’ the network said in a statement Friday.
‘All matters related to the Wednesday episode of ‘The Talk’ are currently under internal review.’
Osbourne also defended herself against claims made by former co-host Holly Robinson Peete who accused her of costing her her job on the show because she was ‘too ghetto’.
Osbourne also defended herself against claims made by former co-host Holly Robinson Peete (above) who accused her of costing her her job on the show because she was ‘too ghetto’
Robinson Peete, who co-hosted the first season in 2010, claimed she was speaking out about the alleged racial slur and her ousting from the talk show after watching Osbourne’s bust-up with Underwood.
‘I’m old enough to remember when Sharon complained that I was too ‘ghetto’ for #theTalk … then I was gone. I bring this up now bc I was mortified watching the disrespectful condescending tone she took w/her co-host who remained calm & respectful because … she HAD to,’ Robinson Peete tweeted.
‘I’ve always been a highroad girl but when I watched what everyone else saw on my former show … it triggered me and I wanted to speak out,’ she added on Instagram.
Osbourne denied these allegations telling Variety it is ‘a 110 percent lie.’
‘It’s an absolute lie—a 110 percent lie,’ she said.
‘I cannot have anyone fired…And that is a not a term I use. That’s not in my vocabulary. I don’t speak like that.
‘The only ghetto I know is the Warsaw Ghetto and I think that’s the only time I’ve ever referred to something like that.’
The furore erupted after Osbourne tweeted her support for Morgan Tuesday, saying: ‘I am with you. I stand by you. People forget that you’re paid for your opinion and that you’re just speaking your truth.’
After she faced a backlash and accusations of racism following Wednesday’s show, Osbourne issued a statement (above) Friday apologizing ‘to anyone of colour that I offended and/or to anyone that feels confused or let down’
On Wednesday’s show, Osbourne then defended Morgan’s comments saying it was ‘freedom of speech.’
‘I know he has a right to say what he feels on the interview, as we have a right to say and everybody has a right to say what they feel with freedom of speech,’ she said.
‘Did I like everything he said? Did I agree with what he said? No, because it’s his opinion. It’s not my opinion.
‘But why is it that because I supported a long-time friend and work colleague of mine for years that everybody goes, if you support him, then you must be racist because he’s racist?’
With Underwood looking upset, Osbourne pressed her asking how Morgan had been racist.
‘You tell me where you have heard him say, educate me, tell me when you have heard him [Morgan] say racist things. Educate me. Tell me,’ she said.
The 68-year-old had tweeted her support for Morgan Tuesday saying he was ‘speaking your truth’
Underwood said that the issue was not with Morgan’s words as much as his tone.
‘It is not the exact words of racism,’ said Underwood.
‘It is the implication and the reaction to it.
‘To not want to address that, because she is a black woman, and to try and dismiss it or to make it seem less than it is. That’s what makes it racist.
‘Right now I am talking to a woman I believe is my friend.
‘I don’t want anybody here to watch this and think we are attacking you for being racist.’
Osbourne posted a lengthy statement on Twitter Friday apologizing over the incident: ‘After some reflection, after sitting with your comments and sitting with my heart I would like to address the discussion on ‘The Talk’ this past Wednesday.
‘I have always been embraced with so much love and support from the black community and I have deep respect and love for the black community.
‘To anyone of colour that I offended and/or to anyone that feels confused or let down by what I said, I am truly sorry.
‘I panicked, felt blindsided, got defensive and allowed my fear and horror of being accused of being racist take over.
Morgan is pictured Thursday after he quit Good Morning Britain amid the backlash over his comments
Piers Morgan expressed his disappointment after Osbourne apologized
‘There are very few things that hurt my heart more than racism so to feel associated with that spun me fast!
‘I am not perfect, I am still learning like the rest of us and will continue to learn, listen and do better.’
She added: ‘Please hear me when I say I do not condone racism, misogyny or bullying.
‘I should have been more specific about that in my tweet. I will always support freedom of speech, but now I see how I unintentionally didn’t make that clear distinction.’
Morgan had praised Osbourne for tweeting her support for him, saying: ‘When stuff like this happens, true friends run towards you, fake friends run away. I love Sharon Osbourne because she always stays true to herself.
‘She knew she would get abused by the woke brigade for tweeting this – but did it anyway because it’s what she believes.’
Following her u-turn, he slammed what he described as ‘bullies’ on The Talk for ‘shaming’ her into apologizing.
‘Sharon’s been shamed & bullied into apologising for defending me against colleagues accusing me of racism because I don’t believe Meghan Markle’s bulls***,’ he tweeted.
‘This is where we’ve reached. I demand an apology from those @TheTalkCBS bullies for their disgraceful slurs against ME.’
On Tuesday, Morgan resigned from GMB after six years on the show in the wake of his response to Meghan and Harry’s interview.
Meghan had told Oprah she was suicidal while five months pregnant with son Archie and turned to the palace for help but was denied it.
Meghan said in the interview (above) her mental health became so bad while they were living in the UK as senior working Royals she ‘didn’t want to be alive any more’
She also said one unnamed member of the Royal Family had raised concerns that Archie’s skin would be too ‘dark’.
‘I don’t believe a word she says, Meghan Markle,’ Morgan said on Monday’s show, hours after the interview first aired in the US.
‘I wouldn’t believe it if she read me a weather report and that fact that she fired up this onslaught against our royal family, I think is contemptible.’
UK media regulator Ofcom launched an investigation after it received more than 41,000 complaints and UK mental health charity Mind, which worked with network ITV, called his comments ‘disappointing.’
It emerged Wednesday that Meghan also wrote to ITV’s boss to complain saying she was worried about how Morgan’s comments could affect people attempting to deal with their own mental health problems, an insider told the Press Association.
The presenter addressed the backlash Tuesday saying it was ‘not for me to question if she felt suicidal’.
He then stormed off the set of GMB Tuesday amid a row with colleague Alex Beresford.
‘I understand that you’ve got a personal relationship with Meghan Markle or had one and she cut you off. She’s entitled to cut you off if she wants to,’ said Beresford.
Piers stormed out of the studio Tuesday amid a row with colleague Alex Beresford over the Oprah interview
‘Has she said anything about you since she cut you off? I don’t think she has, but yet you continue to trash her.’
‘Okay, I’m done with this, sorry, no, sorry … see you later, sorry, can’t do this,’ Morgan said as he walked off.
The show went to an ad and Morgan returned to continue with the remainder of the day following the break.
ITV later released a statement saying Morgan had left the show.
‘Following discussions with ITV, Piers Morgan has decided now is the time to leave Good Morning Britain,’ the network said in a statement.
‘ITV has accepted this decision and has nothing further to add.’
Morgan stood by his comments Wednesday saying he still doesn’t believe Meghan and that he is ‘happy to die on’ free speech.
‘On Monday, I said I didn’t believe Meghan Markle in her Oprah interview. I’ve had time to reflect on this opinion, and I still don’t,’ he tweeted.
‘If you did, OK. Freedom of speech is a hill I’m happy to die on. Thanks for all the love, and hate. I’m off to spend more time with my opinions’.
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