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Wendy Williams is an incredible talent with the most unique voice in daytime. We can’t wait to welcome her back to her iconic purple chair on the set of her show on Monday, March 4. We so appreciate all of the guest hosts and panelists who filled in for Wendy during this time. These people are, and always will be, true family to the show. We want to thank all of the loyal and supportive fans who have been with us for 10 years now. And of course, we thank our station and business partners, who stepped up in such a supportive way.
Wendy Williams added her own note in the statement, simply saying:
Salute to Debmar-Mercury for believing from the start and thanks to my staff for tirelessly holding it down for me.
The update added that The Wendy Williams Show will air repeats the week of February 25th and will return with original episodes with Wendy starting on Monday, March 4th.
Wendy Williams went on hiatus through January and February, reportedly due to suffering a shoulder injury and complications from her Graves disease. There were also rumors that she was having issues in her marriage to show executive producer Kevin Hunter, with those personal problems possibly seen as a factor in her absence. Just rumors, but Wendy loves to talk about rumors herself, so she shouldn't be surprised if her own life gets tongues wagging.
In Wendy's absence, guest hosts filled in for her, including Nick Cannon, Michael Rapaport, and Jerry O’Connell. According to Broadcasting Cable, in the week that ended February 10, Nick Cannon hosted for three days and ratings saw an 8% improvement to a 1.3 rating. As they reported, Wendy Williams was the only talk show out of 14 on the air that improved that week.
Wendy Williams reportedly felt threatened and scared by the guest hosts' success, wondering if she might lose her show to one of the popular guest hosts. That is clearly not the case.
In early February, Nick Cannon gave fans an on-air update about Wendy Williams, saying "she sounded amazing" and "her spirit was so big." He also seemed to try to quash some of the personal life rumors for her (via Page Six):
She said she wanted to speak as a family unit and her, [her husband] Kevin and [her son] Little Kevin they said they are all good. The love and the passion is still there because that’s what you need in times like this … is for your family to stick together with you.
Wendy Williams is no stranger to health concerns. You may recall her Halloween 2017 episode, when she fainted live on the air, apparently from heat exhaustion. Wendy cancelled several shows last February 2018 due to illness, returning in mid-March 2018. In December, she apologized to fans after a show she thought might've been "less than stellar," explaining she was on painkillers from the hairline fracture on her upper arm. She has been open with her past addiction to drugs, calling herself a former "functioning addict."
As of now, unless things change, Wendy Williams plans to return to her show on Monday, March 4. Keep up with all of the premiere dates ahead in our midseason 2019 TV guide.