The veteran ABC journalist says she's not 'depressed' about leaving television because unlike Jay Leno, she doesn't feel like she's 'being pushed out.'
Barbara Walters promises not to cry when she bids farewell to "The View" co-hosts and audience. As her final day on the daytime talk show has been announced, the veteran journalist tells Variety, "I'm not going to cry."
Comparing her departure to Jay Leno's recent exit from "The Tonight Show", Walters says, "I think Jay felt that he was pushed out. I don't feel like I'm being pushed out." Insisting that it's her decision to leave "The View", she shares, "I should really be depressed, but I'm not. So maybe there's something wrong with me. What's wrong with this woman that she's not depressed about leaving television?"
Walters says that despite her retirement, she may come back on certain occasions. "I don't want to say I will never come back," she says. "If the president came on, depending on the circumstances, I might come back. If Fidel Castro said I will do an interview with you, which he has not in 25 years, I would go off and do it. I'm not going off into the sunset."
Once she leaves "The View", the 84-year-old says she won't tune into the show from home although she'll still serve as co-executive producer. "I think it will make me feel bad. I think I will miss it. If I don't see it, I won't miss it," she explains.
Asked about Joy Behar and Elisabeth Hasselbeck's departures, she says, "These are not Barbara and Bill's [Geddie, co-creator] decisions. The network is also involved. I think the feeling was if one went, both had to leave. We needed to shake things up."
Claiming that the show always tries to "present a different side," she reveals, "We're experimenting a little bit. Sometimes we think we should add a man," adding, "We need a conservative voice."
Walters' final day on "The View" will be on Friday, May 16. It will be preceded by a week-long celebration beginning May 12. On May 16, ABC will air a two-hour special highlighting her life and career from 9-11 P.M. ET.