Rosie O'Donnell Tells Barbara Walters to Retire
"Barbara is almost twice my age," writes Rosie, "at some point it becomes necessary to step back"
Rosie O’Donnell has some words of advice for Barbara Walters: Go, already.
In her upcoming memoir, Celebrity Detox, which sheds light on, among other episodes in her life, the TV star’s tumultuous stint last season on The View, O’Donnell, 45, addresses Walters, 77, to say, “And Barbara. At some point, a person gets tired. It’s inevitable,” the New York Post reports.
“Barbara Walters is almost twice my age,” the book (which is to be published Oct. 9) is quoted as saying. “At some point it becomes necessary to step back. Everyone has to go. Going is part of the gig.”
O’Donnell also reportedly states, “I would be less-than-honest if I were to say that there is no trouble between Barbara and I. I mean, our differences are obvious.”
O’Donnell writes that during commercial breaks on The View, audience members would sometimes shout out, “I love you, Rosie” – “and Barbara politely tells them in a schoolteacher tone, ‘It is impolite to say I love you to one person when there are four of us up here.’ ”
In a statement on Tuesday, Walters says, “Rosie has written a very sad book, but I choose to focus on the happier times we had and hope to have in the future.”
In the Q&A section of her Web site, O’Donnell responds to a couple of inquiries about the book. “[I]t hurt her feelings,” O’Donnell answers about Walters’s reaction. Asked if she’s “ready for the storm that will surely follow the release,” she advises, “engage deflector shields.”
As might be expected, O’Donnell’s book also tosses barbs at her old feuding partner, Donald Trump. Of their fight, which started when she commented on his handling of the Miss USA scandal, O’Donnell writes, according to the Post‘s Page Six column, “I honestly did not anticipate the malice of his response.”
This time defending Walters, whom Trump called a “liar,” O’Donnell reportedly writes, “I did not anticipate that he would be cruel enough to do what he did to Barbara. She should have been left alone.”
Asked for comment on what her former co-host has written, Walters on Monday told Extra, “Rosie sent me the book with a note telling me how much she loved me. I have read the book – and I would like to concentrate on the love that she sent.”
O’Donnell’s publicist, Cindi Berger, is also quoted as telling the Post, “Rosie loves and adores Barbara and always will.”
For her part, rather than scaling back, Walters is, in fact, stepping up her professional activities. On Tuesday SIRIUS Satellite Radio announced that, staring Sept. 17, she will host Barbara Live, a weekly live call-in show on SIRIUS Stars channel 102, Mondays from 6 to 7 p.m. ET.
O’Donnell’s blasts, meanwhile, arrive a week after Whoopi Goldberg, 51, made her debut in the chair vacated last May by O’Donnell and as the latest member of the show, Sherri Shepherd, 40, joins the panel.
Not that O’Donnell isn’t squawking a bit about the book herself. As she posted on her blog last Thursday (spelling and punctuation hers):
so i just got my first hard copy of my new book
there on the front flap
“when rosie odonnells mother was diagnosed with cancer in 1968, ten year old rosie thought fame could cure her”
i was born in 1962
my mother got sick in 1973
• Reporting by CARIS DAVIS