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Why Oprah Winfrey Quit '60 Minutes' After Two Seasons

Updated on May 1, 2019
revmjm profile image

Margaret Minnicks has been an online writer for many years. She writes about various things, including celebrities and entertainment.

Oprah Winfrey
Oprah Winfrey | Source

Most viewers thought it was a good thing when Oprah Winfrey announced in 2017 that she was joining 60 Minutes as a special contributor. She joined CBS' newsmagazine on September 24, 2017, during its 50th anniversary year. No matter how good the idea seemed at the time, Oprah has quit the long-running show.

She believes she is justified for giving up the assignment as a special contributor. There were some instructions she didn't understand and couldn't change from who she is to continue after two years.

Oprah Explains Why She Quit "60 Minutes"

The 65-year-old television personality told The Hollywood Reporter why she realized the 60 Minute assignment was not a good fit for her after all. The main thing that caused Oprah to give up the contributor assignment had a lot to do with her own name. Producers instructed her to say it a different way. She was told that she was displaying too much emotion when she introduced herself at the opening of her report. Additionally, Oprah was told to be flat without showing too much emotion while reporting.

The newsmagazine begins with contributors saying their names into a camera. Apparently, Oprah didn't say her name to the producers' liking. Oprah questioned them about the part of her name that sounded emotional. She wanted to know if the problem was with her saying "Oprah" or with her saying "Winfrey."

The former contributor didn't think it was a bad thing how she pronounced her name. After all, she has been in show business most of her life. She didn't know how to flattened herself out, as she had been instructed.

Oprah Winfrey being interviewed
Oprah Winfrey being interviewed | Source


Oprah said she was criticized for interviewing filmmaker Dan Reed and the stars of his Leaving Neverland documentary. That was an interview with details about Michael Jackson's alleged child abuse.

Oprah said she was criticized for giving Reed and the others airtime. She said she would do the interview again in a heartbeat because she didn't find anything wrong with it.

She stated that she has no regret for having done the interview. She added that for years she wanted someone to do a documentary like the one Reed did. She thought he did a good job of showing the pattern over the years.

The newsmagazine wasn't alone with the criticisms about Oprah's interview with the producers of the documentary. Many people on social media agreed that she should not have given Reed and his partners airtime.

Interview with "The Hollywood Reporter"

Oprah's interview came just as she was set to receive The Hollywood Reporter's first Empowerment in Entertainment Award at a gala on April 30. She invited reporters to her hotel suite in Manhattan where she was promoting her latest book, The Path Made Clear. The media mogul opened up about her recent 60 Minutes departure, her political plans, and other issues.

It is clear that Oprah is not accustomed to having people tell her what to do especially how to pronounce her name. With more than 30 years being her own boss, Oprah thought it was demeaning to be given instructions about something as simple as how to pronounce her own name.

Winfrey is a self-made billionaire with an estimated net worth at $2.8 billion, according to Forbes. She has several mansions with her own studio. Besides, she has her own television network, a magazine, a school for girls, and more recently a deal with Apple. She is partnering with Prince Harry, the sixth in line to the throne of England, to do some work about mental health.

With that impressive profile, Oprah feels that she has gotten as far as she has by doing things her way and by being who she is.

Source

Notice How Other Contributors Pronounce Their Names

Since Oprah was not a regular on the program, she might not be missed for a while. So far, 60 Minutes has not commented on Oprah's departure or what she is saying about why she left the CBS popular newsmagazine.

When you watch 60 Minutes on Sunday nights from now on, pay attention to how the other contributors sit on a stool and introduce themselves. See if the pronunciation of their names is void of emotion.

Do you think Oprah Winfrey quit "60 Minutes" for the right reasons?

See results

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    • revmjm profile imageAUTHOR

      Margaret Minnicks 

      2 years ago from Richmond, VA

      Lori, you are right. Oprah is not used to others calling the shots. It was good for her to get out before she invested so much time in the assignment.

    • lambservant profile image

      Lori Colbo 

      2 years ago from United States

      I suspect in addition to the reasons you mentioned, that Oprah is not used to working for others who make the decisions. But if the reasons your cite are the reason, it does seem reasonable for her to be unhappy.

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