Published November 15, 2007
NEW YORK – Ellen DeGeneres has pulled the plug on plans to tape her show next week in New York, where Writers Guild East members had vowed to protest her decision to stay on the air during their strike.
Michael Winship, president of the East Coast branch of the Writers Guild, said the organization was "delighted" with DeGeneres' decision to stay on the West Coast.
"She knows that the Writers Guild East would have been there to protest her lack of solidarity, not only with her Guild writing staff but all the striking members of the Writers Guild, of which she is a member," Winship said in a statement issued Wednesday.
Laura Mandel, a representative for "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," confirmed Wednesday that DeGeneres had scrapped the trip. When asked whether the cancellation was related to the strike, Mandel said: "We make changes all of the time. Our schedule is always fluid."
The syndicated "Ellen" is staying on the air without its union writers, and though DeGeneres herself is a member of the WGA, Mandel says her role on the show is as a performer. She skipped her show the first day of the strike in support of her writers, but returned the following day to honor her contract.
The strike by television and film writers entered its 10th day Wednesday. While production on several talk shows was immediately halted, DeGeneres has stayed put. She told her studio audience last week that while she supported the striking writers, she was obligated under contract to continue her hosting duties.