‘Ellen’ is over. Who will be the next queen of daily television?

Determining who will fill this space comes at a time when daytime television – like all television itself – is changing rapidly. Finding a replacement will not be easy. Despite controversy over reports of toxic work culture, “Ellen” remained one of the day’s most popular talk shows until Thursday’s finale.
The show, which has featured interviews with celebrities, danced and scared people since 2003, had an average of 1.4 million viewers in the 2021-2022 season. It beat many competitors, including “The Kelly Clarkson Show.”
“Ellen” was also pretty lucrative. The show reportedly earned about $ 35 million a year for its distributor, Warner Bros. television, according to Forbes. (Warner Bros. Television, like CNN, is owned by Warner Bros. Discovery.)

DeGeneres found success after the peak of daily television popularity, led by cultural sensation Oprah Winfrey. But those days may be a thing of the past, because tracking habits have changed and streaming has changed, well, everything.

“[Ellen] “One of the major stores in the daytime shopping mall,” said Robert Thompson, a professor of television and popular culture at Syracuse University for CNN Business.

Thompson added that this does not mean that “day television is over” because many shows are still reaching big numbers, but things are not what they used to be.

“He represents the generation where daytime television was still a television phenomenon,” he said.

So the question may not be, “Who’s the next Ellen?” but rather “can there be another Ellen?”

Who’s next?

There is one obvious choice that will replace “Ellen”: Kelly Clarkson.

The Kelly Clarkson Show was a hit when it debuted in 2019 and is still popular. His viewership this season is just behind “Ellen”, an average of 1.3 million viewers.

Clarkson also has to take over the DeGeneres time slot on NBC stations, so it literally takes its place.

“Kelly Clarkson is doing pretty well,” Thompson said. “I think she could be what you would call the Crown Prince.”

Its rise makes sense. Clarkson has created a live daily talk show that mixes interviews and Clarkson’s singing, making the clips viral and courting the audience.

Clarkson told CNN Business in 2019 that she believed her show worked because the world “longed for stories with humor, hearts and everyday heroes with whom they could identify.”
The success of the show so far is remarkable. The daily television genre is full of unsuccessful talk shows from such as Harry Connick Jr., Queen Latifah and even experienced interviewers such as Katie Couric and Meredith Vieria.

So Clarkson and other newcomers Tamron Hall and Drew Barrymore – each with an average of 700,000 to a million viewers this season – have the job saved if they want to have the impact – and the money – that Ellen has made.

What will be next?

“Ellen “‘s successor plans are further complicated by the fact that today’s viewers can watch anything, anytime, so it’s harder to really stand out.

Nevertheless, Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein – co-chairs of Debmar-Mercury in Lionsgate, which distributes and produces syndicated shows – told CNN Business that despite all the changes in the television industry, the day is still important.

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“Production during the day can still be profitable for us, even though there are fewer viewers on the whole television due to the fragmentation of the audience,” Bernstein said in an e-mail. “Our main buyers are television stations and it is essential for them to have strong daily programs that lead to their highly profitable reports in the late afternoon.”

Marcus reiterated his colleague and said in an e-mail that the future of daily television is “not so simple”, but the key to its profitability is to “gather eyeballs wherever they are – be it broadcast, digital networks, YouTube, Facebook and others. platforms. ”

And of course to find the right person to lead the show.

“The most important thing is to find the precious diamond that the viewers want to watch during the day,” Marcus said.

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