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The Advice Oprah Winfrey Gave Sherri Shepherd As She Prepares To Officially Take Over Wendy Williams’ Slot

The day is fast approaching for Sherri Shepherd to debut her new talk show, and she’s excited to finally be taking over the time slot previously held by Wendy Williams with her own show, rather than just serving as a guest host. The comedian/actress has some big ideas when it comes to what she wants Sherri to accomplish, and it sounds like she’s getting advice from the right person to make those things happen. Shepherd opened up about the wise words she was offered from none other than Oprah Winfrey about how to find success in the daytime TV realm.

Sherri is set to premiere on Monday, September 12, as a replacement for The Wendy Williams Show, which was canceled after its 13th season when the eponymous host was unable to appear for the final season due to health issues. Sherri Shepherd filled in for Williams as a guest host, but now that she’s set to call all her own shots, she took advantage of the opportunity to pick the brain of one of the most famous talk show hosts in TV history. Shepherd recalled to EW the advice she got from Oprah:

One thing I took from Oprah is, she said, 'Sherri, the show is not about the ratings, it's about the energy. You put out the energy, and it will come back in direct proportion to you from the audience. It's your responsibility. You're in charge of the energy that is on your show.' I felt that, because I was like, damn, I just wanted to show some viral videos and make people laugh. But it's true, it's the energy you give off, which is why we love Oprah.

If Oprah says to bring the energy, you can bet that Sherri Shepherd will do just that. For one thing, I can imagine that following any advice “The Queen of All Media” sends your way would be a good idea. But also, Shepherd’s background in stand-up comedy proves that she already knows how to engage her audience. In fact, she’s said that with Ellen DeGeneres ending her show after 19 seasons, she has the opportunity to fill that void of a daytime talk show hosted by a comedian.

Sherri Shepherd was apparently able to glean a good bit of advice from Oprah Winfrey, as she said she took multiple pages of notes during her audience with the iconic host. She said:

I'm literally going to frame the 15 pages of notes. I'm not even throwing them away. Those will be in my memoirs, my biopic, the notes will be on the wall. If I could've recorded Oprah, I would've, because I said that nobody is going to believe this.

I can only imagine the gems that Oprah Winfrey dropped, and Sherri Shepherd must feel pretty fortunate to have those words of wisdom. Shepherd already had some ideas about how her show will differ from Wendy Williams’. She wants a celebrity-friendly atmosphere, where her guests won’t have to worry about a “gotcha” moment. Audience feedback suggested that some people thought Williams was “mean,” but that is not something Shepherd plans to carry over to Sherri. Perhaps that will help her attract A-listers including Michelle Obama, Meryl Streep and, of course, Oprah Winfrey herself

Sherri is set to make its debut in syndication on Monday, September 12, so check your local listings for time and channel. You can also check out these movies and shows to watch if you love Oprah Winfrey.

Heidi Venable
Content Producer

Mom of two and hard-core '90s kid. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Thrives on New Orleans Saints football, The West Wing and taco trucks.