Arts & entertainment
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The Oprah Winfrey Show: An uncertain future?
Oprah fans are concerned over the future of "The Oprah Winfrey Show." The show, which is expected to reach its epilogue in 2011 under normal circumstances, could possibly draw its curtains sooner. According to rumours, Oprah Winfrey, the show’s billionaire presenter, is planning an earlier exit to focus on a project involving the development of a television channel.
Questions over whether the world famous and wealthy "Queen of Talk" planning to end her show, which has become more of a household product in both the United States and many countries around the world including South Africa where she has built a school for young girls, are rife.
The show, launched in 1986 and broadcast on CBS and ABC across the U.S. as well as numerous other countries the world over, under contract with King World Productions, was extended for a three year period in 2008 to hit its silver jubilee (25th year) mark in 2011. "The thought of taking the show to its 25th anniversary is both exhilarating and challenging," Oprah Winfrey had stated in 2004.
Five years on, the queen of talk’s mind is seemingly occupied by other projects, especially a TV channel in partnership with the Discovery Channel. Born in 2008, "The Oprah Winfrey Network” (OWN), which is expected to start broadcasting in 2010, will initially reach some 70 million homes.
OWN, a lifestyle channel, will be taking over the Discovery Health Channel and aims to entertain, inform and inspire people to live better.
But although OWN is widely expected to follow in the footsteps of “The Oprah Winfrey show”, enthusiasts still worry over who will be entrusted with questions pertaining to the society, should Oprah leave the scene before the OWN project is launched.
Oprah Winfrey is an actress, writer, producer (Harpo Films), and also owns a radio station and the magazine O, The Oprah Winfrey Magazine. The "Queen of Talk", aged 55, is the first black female billionaire in the history of the United States.
Photo: The Oprah Winfrey Show