Walters Says Star Jones "Betrayed" Her
Barbara Walters, who produces The View, said Tuesday that she felt "betrayed" when Star Jones announced during the show that she was leaving the show. It had earlier been reported by People magazine that Jones had told the magazine that she ad been "fired." In an interview after Tuesday's broadcast, Walters told the Associated Press that she had been "try to do everything I possibly could" for The View panelist "up until this morning when I was betrayed." She said that she had tried to intervene on Jones's behalf when ABC chiefs decided last fall not to renew her contract after research showed that controversy over her dramatic weight loss -- she claimed that it was the result of diet and exercise; others claimed it was the result of a gastric bypass operation -- had upset audience members. "We tried to talk them out of it," Walters told the A.P., "and we tried to give Star time to redeem herself in the eyes of the audience, and the research just kept getting worse." Some TV writers expressed surprise that Jones was leaving the show prior to Rosie O'Donnell's joining it. O'Donnell had been publicly feuding with Jones over her weight-loss claims. Commented David Zurawik, the Baltimore Sun TV critic: "As a result, fans of the popular ABC talk show will be denied the chance to see one of the more promising celebrity showdowns of the fall."