9:02am PT by Hilary Lewis
'The View' Officially Announces Michelle Collins Hiring
The View on Monday officially announced that frequent guest host Michelle Collins has joined the show as a permanent co-host.
As the show did with Raven-Symone, the other co-hosts took the stage and moderator Whoopi Goldberg announced the new co-host, who walked out amid a shower of confetti.
Collins, who will make regular appearances over the next few weeks until the show goes on hiatus in August, will officially start when The View returns for Season 19 in September.
As she took her seat, an "excited" and "nervous" Collins said, "I feel so lucky that I get to come here and spend this time with you."
She thanked everyone who worked on the show, who she said have all been welcoming and kind to her since her first day, particularly creator Barbara Walters, "wherever you are."
"Bagels in Miami next time I'm there. Name the day," Collins told Walters.
In a statement, the comedian and new View co-host added, "These past few months have been the most fun and exciting of my career, and I couldn't be happier to join such an awesome, smart, accomplished and funny group of women. Ever since the age of four — and the height of 5’ 6” — it's been my dream to host a talk show, and the fact that I now get to do just that every day with an amazing, hard-working team of producers, writers, cast and crew is beyond my wildest expectations. Many thanks to the people at ABC for inviting me to be a part of this team, and specifically to the great Barbara Walters and Whoopi Goldberg, whose support has meant the world to me.”
Executive producer Bill Wolff said, “Michelle is a great addition to The View. She is lightning quick, has strong opinions and is wickedly funny. Our entire staff is looking forward to her joining the show.”
Walters said, “Michelle Collins brings a fantastic energy and a keen sense of humor to the program. Michelle can be both outrageous and thoughtful. She is a welcome addition to The View panel with her intelligence, quick wit and vast knowledge of pop culture.”
Collins, who currently lives in Los Angeles said she was looking forward to returning to New York and was welcomed to her new gig with Jay Z and Alicia Keys' "Empire State of Mind."
Collins' hiring was initially expected to be announced last week in the episode that featured co-host Rosie Perez tearing up as she talked about her decision to leave the show after just one season.
Goldberg had previously told View viewers, when both Raven-Symone and Collins were just guest co-hosts, that they were hoping to make both permanent additions to the show.
Goldberg is expected to be back next season along with Raven-Symone and Collins. It hasn't yet been determined if Nicolle Wallace, who joined the show this season with Perez as part of an overhaul that included Rosie O'Donnell's return, will return next season.