8:19am PT by Hilary Lewis
Emotional Rosie Perez Cries, Thanks 'View' Colleagues as She Says Goodbye
An emotional Rosie Perez repeatedly cried as she talked about leaving The View on Wednesday's episode of the ABC daytime show.
The co-host, whom executive producer Bill Wolff announced yesterday would be leaving after just one season on the show, said "I've decided that it's time to move on. I would say that today is very bittersweet for me."
Perez added that while she's "excited" about her future she is "so sad to leave The View." After tearing up when her co-hosts joined her for a group hug before they took their seats around the table, Perez began crying again as she addressed Nicolle Wallace and Whoopi Goldberg, her co-hosts this season. All three women held hands across the table. New co-host Raven-Symone and guest co-host Michelle Collins were also on Wednesday's show. Perez thanked Wallace and Goldberg for their friendship, calling Goldberg "truly the captain of the ship."
To Goldberg, Perez added, "I want to thank you for everything: your guidance, your professionalism."
She also thanked Wallace, who also appeared to be crying, "for your intelligence and your wit and your sunshine."
Perez thanked all of the show's producers, including Wolff, ABC News execs Tom Cibrowski and Barbara Fedida and Disney-ABC Television Group president Ben Sherwood — who called her Wednesday morning, Perez said — for the opportunity.
"This has opened me up to a broader audience, and I will be forever grateful for that. " Perez said, thanking the "entire ABC family" for the chance "to be part of such an iconic show."
But she added she wanted to thank the fans the most, saying it makes her day whenever someone says they love her on the show.
"It's a huge honor to be first Latina on The View," she said. "What the hell took y'all so long?"
She also offered a special thanks to the Latin community: "Your support through this journey as a community has helped me through this year. It really has. And I will never forget what you have done for me."
In closing, Perez said, "I do not have one regret coming to this show. I would do it all over again. And it's all because of you, the fans." She also thanked her fans in Spanish, saying "Gracias, mi gente."
Perez also received a standing ovation from her co-hosts and the audience, who chanted her name.
The show's opening was made even more somber by The Flamingos' "Lovers Never Say Goodbye," which played as the co-hosts walked out.
Perez, who is officially set to leave the show at the end of this season, on Aug. 6, returned to The View for the first time this week on Wednesday. She'd been absent from Monday and Tuesday's episodes, and The View was in reruns for most of last week. Perez said on Wednesday that she would return after Aug. 6 "as a friend of the show, but it's just time to go."