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Julie Chen on 'Big Brother' I'm 'Moonves' Forever And the Audience Loves It

9/19/2018 11:32 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Julie Chen's sign-off last week on 'Big Brother' wasn't a one-time stunt -- 'cause she did it again for Wednesday night's episode, and got major love. 

Sources at Tuesday night's taping tell TMZ ... Julie opened the show by saying ... "Good evening, I'm Julie Chen Moonves. Welcome to 'Big Brother.'" Her words were met with a thunderous show of support from the audience. 

Julie signed off with the Moonves surname during last week's episode -- and now it seems she is taking her husband's name full-time, on the heels of his hasty exit from CBS amid sexual misconduct allegations.

TMZ broke the story ... Julie wants to stay on as the host of 'Big Brother,' and CBS won't ask her to go. Assuming they renew the hit show for another season, she's likely to stay put.

"The Talk" is a different story. Julie announced her exit from that show Tuesday. We're told she left on her own accord ... and wasn't asked to leave.

Julie Chen Staying On as 'Big Brother' Host

9/19/2018 1:00 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Julie Chen will remain the host of 'Big Brother' because CBS won't ask her to go and she wants to stay ... TMZ has learned.

CBS insiders tell TMZ the network does not want to punish Julie for her husband Les Moonves' alleged misdeeds, so she will finish the current season and the plan is for her to return, with one big IF. The IF is bringing the show back for another season. The ratings are still good and the all-important demos are strong, so renewal is all but certain.

As for whether Julie wants back ... the answer is YES. Sources connected to Julie tell TMZ, she will absolutely finish the season and wants to return for future seasons.

Julie announced Tuesday she was leaving "The Talk." Our sources say it was all her decision -- CBS put NO pressure on her to leave.

It makes sense Julie opted for 'BB' over "The Talk" for 2 reasons. First, the 'BB' shooting schedule is less demanding than "The Talk" so it gives her more time to spend with her husband and son -- something she says is a priority.

Perhaps more significant ... "The Talk" is a topical show, and sexual harassment is a staple, which would make for uncomfortable conversation. "Big Brother" is more scripted and doesn't get as personal.

Short story ... she's coming back to "Big Bro."

Julie Chen Officially Announces Exit from 'The Talk'

9/18/2018 12:13 PM PDT
Breaking News

Julie Chen just formally announced she's leaving "The Talk" and her departing message thanked both her fans and costars.

The longtime talk show host and CBS anchor appeared in a pre-recorded video Tuesday at the bottom of the show, where she said, in part, that she was leaving "The Talk" to spend more time with her husband, Les Moonves, and their young son.

Julie, who eventually became teary-eyed during her remarks, thanked all the hosts of "The Talk," singling out each one and quickly reminiscing on their friendship. She ended with "I love you all, and I know this show and the sisterhood it stands for will live on for many, many, many more years to come. You ladies got this, and I cannot be more proud to call you my friends. I love you." 

The camera eventually cut back to the main set where all the ladies were in tears. Sara Gilbert quickly thanked Julie for her contributions to "The Talk" and the program ended from there without further discussion.

As we reported ... Julie was slated to make the announcement that she would be off of "The Talk" effective immediately. No word on whether she's leaving her "Big Brother" hosting gig just yet, but it appears she'll be sticking it out for the short term. She's hosting again this week.

Julie returned to "Big Brother" last week without mentioning the sexual assault allegations against her husband, Les Moonves. She also didn't talk about his forced resignation from CBS in the wake of several women coming forward to accuse him of past sexual misconduct.

She did, however, sign off on Thursday's episode as Julie Chen Moonves ... clearly showing her support for her husband. 

No word yet on a potential replacement for Julie on "The Talk" ... but some people have already shown interest in the gig. However, 'DWTS' judge Carrie Ann Inaba did fill in for Julie as a guest host Tuesday .... and Julie indicated she looked great in that seat.

Claudia Jordan Soooo, Now That Julie Chen's Gone ... Holla At Your Girl, CBS!!!

9/18/2018 7:26 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Claudia Jordan is trying her best to talk her way into "The Talk" ... with no apologies to Julie Chen ... who Claudia thinks shouldn't be stepping down anyway.

We got Claudia in L.A. leaving Avenue nightclub Monday night, and she was not shy about angling to replace Julie as a co-host on the CBS daytime talk show. As we reported, Julie announced Monday she's leaving "The Talk" ... effective immediately.

The move, of course, comes on the heels of her husband Les Moonves' ousting as CBS' top honcho following myriad allegations of sexual misconduct. Speaking of those allegations ... Claudia says it's BS Les' misdeeds turned Julie into collateral damage. 

Julie Chen I'm Leaving 'The Talk'

9/17/2018 7:54 PM PDT

Julie Chen will be leaving her daytime gig at "The Talk" ... TMZ has confirmed.

Sources with direct knowledge tell TMZ, Tuesday's show will include a videotape of Julie saying she's leaving the show immediately.  

It seemed inevitable Julie would take a final bow from the show, where discussions frequently involve issues like sexual misdeeds. Although her husband, Les Moonves, has denied any improper conduct, the fact that 12 women have come forward and that he was forced out ... it would put Julie in a tough spot.

Julie did appear on "Big Brother" last week and it seems she'll stick that one out ... at least in the short term. She made it clear she's standing by her husband at the end of last week's show, when she signed off as "Julie Chen Moonves."

No word on who will replace Julie. 

Les Moonves Not Invited to Emmys

9/17/2018 1:00 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Les Moonves was at the helm of 18 TV programs that have been nominated for Emmys, but he's not going to the big shindig Monday night ... because CBS didn't invite him.

Sources with direct knowledge tell TMZ, CBS made a decision not to extend the invitation in the wake of the sexual misconduct scandal. Each network gets a certain number of tickets it can distribute as it wishes, and Les will not be a beneficiary.

A network source calls it a "non-issue" because Moonves has not attended the Emmys in several years.

One source says it's complicated because Moonves was not technically fired, although he was clearly forced to step down after a dozen women accused him of sexual misdeeds. Nevertheless, it's the network's decision who gets tickets ... so, case closed.

As for some of the shows nominated under Moonves' watch ...

-- "The Amazing Race" 

-- "The Big Bang Theory"   

-- "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert"  

-- "The Late Late Show with James Corden"

-- "Bruno Mars: Live 24K Magic at the Apollo"

It will be interesting to hear CBS acceptance speeches ... who gets mentioned and who doesn't.           

Larry King Julie Chen Should Stand By Her Man!!!

9/15/2018 7:22 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Larry King thinks Julie Chen Moonves was not only right to stand by her man ... he sang her praises for doing so -- literally.

We got Larry and wife Shawn Friday night in Bev Hills leaving Madeo, and Larry said he's known Les for many many years, and what the former CBS honcho did 2 decades ago was horrible. Nevertheless, he thinks Julie's loyalty is appropriate.

Larry then put Shawn on the spot and asked what she would do. Shawn uncomfortably did some math, and ultimately came out on Julie's side.

To button it up ... Larry gave us a rousing rendition -- well, more like a rendition -- of a famous country song.

Julie Chen Makes Big 'Big Brother' Statement ... 'I'm Julie Chen Moonves'

9/13/2018 6:24 PM PDT

Julie Chen did something Thursday night she has never done in her 19-year run at CBS ... she ID'd herself as "Julie Chen Moonves" ... and make no mistake about it -- it's a big statement.

Julie came back to CBS to host "Big Brother" ... 4 days after her husband and former boss Les Moonves was removed as the network's head honcho.

Julie never referenced the scandal or Les by name, but closed the show with a bang. Mind you ... Julie has been an anchor on "CBS This Morning," "The Talk," "Big Brother" and other CBS shows and she has NEVER used her husband's surname ... until now.

Before the show, Julie teased her return with a photo holding "Big Brother" cue cards, but she made it clear for everyone... her wedding ring and her marriage are intact.  

Julie has not returned to "The Talk," and it's unclear when that will happen, but Sharon Osbourne said on Monday she'd be back after taking a few days off.

Short story ... all the people who thought Julie would follow her husband out the door may be wrong.

'Big Brother' Star Dan Gheesling 'BB' is Irreplaceable ... Even if Julie Chen Leaves

9/12/2018 12:40 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

One of the most famous "Big Brother" contestants says the show is rock solid ... despite rumors longtime host, Julie Chen, might be leaving Big Brother with Les Moonves now gone.

Dan Gheesling -- who won season 10 and was the runner-up on season 14 of "Big Brother" -- says if Julie steps away from her hosting role on CBS' hit reality series, whoever replaces her will have some massive shoes to fill. Her 18-year run has been that iconic.

So far, Julie has not given even a hint that she'll leave the show. In fact, she made it clear ... she'll be hosting Thursday night's episode.

The real question ... will "Big Brother" go on the chopping block now that Moonves is gone? Sharon Osbourne said this week on "The Talk" nobody's job is safe now ... nor are any of the CBS shows in the wake of Moonves' departure.

Ultimately it comes down to ratings. Although Dan says the show is a juggernaut ... the ratings are down this season from last, although the all-important demos are still strong.

As they say in TV land -- TBD.

Julie Chen Absent From 'The Talk' ... Sharon Osbourne Tears Up

9/10/2018 11:19 AM PDT

Julie Chen is taking time off her gig on CBS' "The Talk" to be with husband, Les Moonves, who just resigned from heading up the network amid sexual misconduct allegations, and Sharon Osbourne says people at CBS -- including the ladies at "The Talk" -- are fearful of losing their jobs.

Julie is still featured in the opening of the show, but when the remaining 4 women walked out onstage, Sharon began by saying it's the first time on the show she's been nervous.

She explained Julie has been there for her over the last 9 years since the show debuted, and then walked a tightrope, saying she now believes the stories of Moonves' accusers are strikingly similar and credible.

Sharon then suggested her own show might be on the chopping block because there's now a new regime at CBS ... and not just her show -- all shows.

Julie issued a statement saying she will be appearing on "Big Brother" this Thursday, adding, "I am taking a few days off from 'The Talk' to be with my family. I will be back soon and will see you Thursday night on 'Big Brother.'"

There was speculation Julie might also leave the network, but so far no evidence of that. 

Les Moonves Out as CBS' CEO ... Vows to Donate $20M to #MeToo

9/9/2018 4:43 PM PDT
Breaking News

7:25 PM PT -- Les Moonves has issued a statement in the wake of his ouster from CBS, saying in part ... "Untrue allegations from decades ago are now being made against me that are not consistent with who I am.  Effective immediately I will no longer be Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of CBS. I am deeply saddened to be leaving the company. I wish nothing but the best for the organization, the newly comprised board of directors and all of its employees."

4:30 PM PT -- It's just been announced Moonves is out at CBS, and the network is implementing a big shakeup on its board of directors through a company-wide settlement. Interestingly, CBS says $20 million will be donated on Moonves' and the network's behalf to an org that supports #MeToo, which is set to be made immediately. The cash will come out of any severance benefits owed to Moonves following a pending investigation into his alleged misconduct. The company also notes that Moonves will not be getting any type of severance package at this point, but may receive further payment once its investigation is wrapped and after a final evaluation from the Board.

CBS's longtime CEO, Les Moonves, is reportedly resigning from his position as head of the network after multiple allegations of sexual misconduct.

Citing sources familiar with the matter, CNN's Brian Stelter reported Sunday that Moonves would be stepping down and that the official announcement would be made either Sunday night or early Monday morning. This comes on the heels of a second New Yorker article by Ronan Farrow where six additional women accused Moonves of sexual misconduct. 

The allegations range from Moonves allegedly forcing oral sex on certain women, exposing himself without permission to others ... and allegedly using physical violence or intimidation against them.

He'd already been accused of sexual misconduct from 6 separate women earlier this summer -- including allegations of sexual assault from the 1980s ... for which he will not face criminal charges. Ronan wrote that earlier piece as well. 

Moonves has worked at CBS since 1995, where he first served as president of CBS Entertainment. He served as CEO of CBS Television from '98 to 2003, and was eventually bumped up to chairman and CEO of the entire company in 2003. He's responsible for greenlighting series like 'CSI,' 'Without a Trace,' 'NCIS,' 'Survivor,' 'Cold Case' and many, many other hit shows. 

Reports have recently said that Moonves and the CBS board were negotiating an exit package for him somewhere in the ball park of $100 million. Stelter says exit talks have been finalized, but did not report on any specific figure. 

Originally published -- 11:29 AM PT

Roy Moore Sues Sacha Baron Cohen for $95M

9/5/2018 1:00 PM PDT

Roy Moore followed through on his threat -- he's suing Sacha Baron Cohen for portraying him as a pedophile on national TV ... and he's gunning for tens of millions of dollars.

Moore and his wife, Kayla, filed suit against Sacha, Showtime and CBS for duping him into appearing on Cohen's "Who Is America?" In the episode Sacha, disguised as an ex-Israeli intelligence officer, waved a wand that could supposedly detect enzymes secreted by pedophiles.

Of course, the device went off like crazy when he used it on Moore. Viewers might have laughed, but Roy isn't.

According to the docs, obtained by TMZ, the entire interview was set up under false pretenses. The Moores say they never would've agreed to meet with Sacha or sign his release form had they known it was all a sham.

More importantly, they say Sacha's gag -- which aired last month -- made Roy look like a sex offender, and seriously tarnished his reputation, caused emotional distress and financial damage. They insist Roy is not a sex offender, and Sacha's prank amounts to defamation. They're suing for at least $95 million.

The former U.S. Senate hopeful faced multiple allegations that he'd preyed on minors decades ago ... accusations that surfaced while he was running for Senate in Alabama last year. He vehemently denied the claims, and has never been charged with a crime.

Stevie Wonder Gets Emotional Remembering Last Words to Aretha

8/17/2018 9:17 AM PDT

Stevie Wonder choked back tears during an interview in which he revealed his last words to Aretha Franklin before she died.

Stevie joined "CBS This Morning" Friday and almost immediately got emotional when asked about his last real conversation with the Queen of Soul, which was about 2 months ago. Stevie -- who said Aretha couldn't talk when he visited her Tuesday -- said he told her to "say hello to my sister."

Stevie's sister died earlier this year. Reports say her decomposed body was found in her home.

Stevie revealed there were plans to do some music together ... including a duet with Aretha for a song he'd written. Aretha and Stevie were incredibly close. She covered Stevie's 'Until You Come Back to Me' and they performed it together at the Soul Train Lady of Soul Awards in 2005. 

Watch the video ... Stevie gives some insight on "Respect." As we reported ... Aretha died after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. She was 76.

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