Chelsea Handler's Netflix Showrunner Out After Just Three Weeks

Bill Wolff, who is departing 'Chelsea' after only nine episodes on the air, will not be replaced.
Courtesy of NBC; Getty Images
Bill Wolff, Chelsea Handler

Chelsea Handler is parting ways with her new Netflix talk show's executive producer and showrunner.

Only three weeks and nine episodes into its run, executive producer Bill Wolff is leaving Chelsea, Netflix confirmed Friday. The series, which airs three nights a week on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, will continue with its regular production schedule, and will not find a replacement showrunner for Wolff. Though viewership figures will be kept tightly guarded, the show launched to weak reviews.

“I am excited for Chelsea as she continues to produce her singular vision for a television talk show," Wolff said in a statement. "My friends at Netflix provide the foremost platform in developing ambitious and compelling creative content."

Added Handler: "I’m grateful that Bill was part of the pioneering effort to get Netflix’s first talk show off the ground.”

Wolff, a veteran TV producer, was tapped as the showrunner of Chelsea just two days after his departure from ABC's The View, where he spent a year helping to spearhead a rebrand of the tumultuous talker. Prior to that, Wolff had spent nearly 10 years at MSNBC, where he was an executive producer on cable news programs including The Rachel Maddow Show.

Chelsea marks Netflix's foray into the talk show sphere, and is the streamer's second collaboration with Handler following docuseries Chelsea Does, which launched to stronger reviews earlier this year. The streaming service is reportedly paying her $10 million for the cadre of projects. Handler famously parted ways with her former employer, E!, in 2014, after publicly blasting the network. In an interview on The Howard Stern Show, she said, "E! has just become a sad, sad place to live. They don't know what they're doing, they have no ideas ... everything they do just is a failure."

The news of Chelsea losing a showrunner comes a month after another talk show added one. Stephen Colbert's CBS late-night talk show spent its first seven months on the air without a showrunner before CBS This Morning veteran Chris Licht was brought on board as an executive producer. As such, he now oversees all aspects of production on The Late Show.