ABC confirmed one of TV’s worst-kept secrets this morning: Bill Wolff is new exec producer of The View. The network also named Brian Balthazar as co-executive producer, Ashley S. Gorman as director, and Kathleen Rajsp as senior supervising producer.
For weeks, word on the street was that Wolff was the new EP; he was executive producer for MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show and VP Primetime Programming for that cable news network. His credits also include executive producer of MSNBC’s The Situation With Tucker Carlson, and Fox Sports Networks I, Max as well as coordinating producer, creator for ESPN’s Around the Horn. Word ABC had hired Wolff to run the show led to speculation it was going in a more political/hard news direction. That seemed to be confirmed by the list of hopefuls Chem-Tested the other day with returning host Whoopi Goldberg and returning host Rosie O’Donnell: CNN’s contributing legal analyst Sunny Hostin, political contributor Ana Navarro, and Crossfire panelist S.E. Cupp. Also tested: MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace, who was George W. Bush’s communications honcho, and Bloomberg TV managing editor Stephanie Ruhle. In the mix were ESPN anchor Sage Steele and ESPN.com columnist Jemele Hill. Also, Good Day LA co-host Lauren Sanchez — who has a child with NFL-er Tony Gonzalez from their past relationship — which is relevant because, in one of those incredible coincidences that makes covering the TV industry so interesting, ABC also chem-tested Gonzalez’s wife, October Gonzalez.
“I am so appreciative for the privilege to work on this iconic program and to have the chance to collaborate with incredible people like Whoopi and Rosie, who each bring immense talent and boundless passion to show,” Bill Wolff said today. “I will be forever grateful to Rachel Maddow for six amazing years together. As I begin this next chapter, I cannot fully express my profound gratitude to Ben Sherwood for making it all possible.”
Here’s today’s announcement:
Balthazar’s diverse background includes roles on both sides of the camera in various areas of television from news to morning show production, primetime cable and entertainment journalism. launched the fourth hour of “The Today Show,” served as Vice President of Programming and Executive Producer of digital content production for AOL’s main homepage often appearing as host of “AOL Spotlight” and worked as both executive and host for HGTV. He remains closely tied to current events and pop culture with his website PopGoesTheWeek.com.
Gorman is no stranger to television, having directed thousands of hours of live shows in the U.K. and the U.S. specializing in entertainment, food, magazine and music. Some of his many credits including: “Hell’s Kitchen,” “I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here…NOW!,” “The Biggest Loser, “This Morning,” “Sunday Brunch” and “I Wanna Marry ‘Harry’.”
Rajsp’s extensive talk show credits include “Katie,” “Anderson,” “Ask Oprah’s All Stars” and “Dr. Phil” among others.
As previously announced, “The View” has taken up residence in the ABC Broadcast Center as part of the network’s plans for reinventing the popular franchise with a new studio, a contemporary state-of-the-art set with an on-camera social media station and a new logo and color scheme.
The question on everyone’s minds? Who will join moderator Whoopi Goldberg and Rosie O’Donnell for this incomparable season of in-depth, opinion-shaping discussions? Stay tuned.