Melissa McCarthy Replaces Steve Harvey as Little Big Shots Host After His Talk Show Is Canceled
“Melissa is a strong creative force with her own ideas. Changes will be apparent,” NBC’s co-chairman of entertainment Paul Telegdy said
Harvey, 62, who hosted the show for its first three seasons, will be replaced by Melissa McCarthy, PEOPLE confirms.
“Melissa’s just an incredible performer and incredible comedian,” NBC’s co-chairman of entertainment Paul Telegdy said in a statement, adding that the mother of two, 48, “will bring a completely fresh perspective to it.”
“Melissa is a strong creative force with her own ideas. Changes will be apparent,” Telegdy added.
Although an exact date for the series’ return has not been announced, the show will begin airing again at 8 p.m. on Sunday nights after the end of football season next winter.
The change was announced shortly after news of Harvey’s daytime talk show, Steve, getting canceled by NBC after seven years with the network.
The syndicated show taped its final episode on Thursday and episodes will air through June with reruns airing through September, according to Variety.
The news may not have been surprising to Harvey himself, who had previously expressed uncertainty over whether he and the program would stay with the network when the current season ended.
“I thought I was until they made an announcement a couple weeks ago that they wanted to give Kelly Clarkson the owned and operated NBC Networks, and that’s my slot,” he said during an interview at Variety ‘s Entertainment Summit in January.
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He went on to admit that he would have liked for NBC to reveal the news to him personally, instead of finding out about in the press, like everybody else.
“I’m an honorable guy and I’m just an old school guy and I just thought that you’re supposed to talk to people and go, ‘Look, you’ve been good business for us. This is what we’re thinking of doing. Are you okay with that?’ No, you don’t just put something in the paper and say, ‘I’m gonna make this move right here’ because it’s crazy,” he said. “You look at the numbers on.”
NBC executives were reportedly unhappy with the decision to cancel Harvey’s show, due to the network losing its ownership stakes of the popular daytime talk show, according to Variety.
Harvey’s producers are in the process of shopping the program to other networks, however, fans of the show can still watch him on ABC’s Family Feud in the meantime.
Reps for Harvey did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.