Pete Norman and Stephen M. Silverman
July 27, 2007 09:00 AM

It’s been two months since Rosie O’Donnell walked away from The View, but now speculation is rife that Whoopi Goldberg and Sherri Shepherd are about to hop into the hot seats.

Next week a formal announcement is expected that the two comedians will join the ABC daytime gabfest, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Refusing comment on the report, network spokesman Karl Nilsson tells PEOPLE, “There is nothing to announce.”

ABC Daytime president Brian Frons also told Variety, “We have no closed deal” with Goldberg.

After eight tumultuous months – culminating in an uncomfortable-to-watch on-air spat with costar Elisabeth Hasselbeck – O’Donnell bolted from the show one month before her one-season contract was due to expire.

Last year, Star Jones Reynolds also left the program amid backstage rancor and a public clash with costar (and View executive co-producer) Barbara Walters.

In a much smoother departure, former panelist Meredith Viera also left the show last year, to join NBC’s Today.

Recently, Goldberg, 51, Shepherd, 40, and Kathy Griffin, 46, have been mentioned as the chief possibilities to join Joy Behar, Hasselbeck and Walters at the table.

As for O’Donnell, Friday’s New York Times reports that next spring she will appear in a brief New York revival of the 1920’s stage musical No, No, Nanette. She will play the role of Pauline, a wisecracking maid.

Reporting by KC Baker

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