UPDATE 7 PM: ABC just confirmed our story, officially announcing Perez and Wallace as new co-hosts. The release with quotes from the duo is below the original story.
EXCLUSIVE: The search is over. Final details are still being worked out but I’ve learned that actress Rosie Perez and political commentator Nicolle Wallace are expected to take the vacant seats on The View when the ABC daytime talk show returns for a new season September 15. They would join Rosie O’Donnell and Whoopi Goldberg. Perez and Wallace would succeed co-hosts Sherri Shepherd and Jenny McCarthy, who exited last month.
Wallace, who served as communications director for George W. Bush, was among the women who did a screen test for The View last month, emerging as one of the frontrunners. She also did three guest co-hosting stints this year. Perez has been largely under the radar during the search but she is a household name and served as a guest co-host on the talk show in February.
With the new hires, the new View hosting team would include three actresses: O’Donnell, Goldberg and Perez. I hear Perez’s schedule has been worked out in a way so she can juggle her duties on The View with a Broadway gig — she just signed on to co-star opposite Larry David in in David’s play Fish In The Dark, produced by Scott Rudin. She is with Innovative Artists, Silver Lining Entertainment and Neil Meyer. Wallace is with ICM partners. The cast overhaul is part of a top-to-bottom makeover at The View, which includes a new studio, new set, new logo and new behind-the-scenes team led by new executive producer Bill Wollf.
It’s official! The panel is now complete. Rosie Perez and Nicolle Wallace are the new co-hosts of “The View” joining moderator Whoopi Goldberg and Rosie O’Donnell. The new season will be unlike any in recent history and premieres live on MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 15 (11:00 a.m.-12:00 noon, ET) on the ABC Television Network.
“These are powerful and accomplished women from different walks of life who have had amazing personal and professional experiences. Each brings incredible perspective and information to the table,” said Bill Wolff, executive producer. “This mix of smart, vibrant and energetic women is unlike anything else on daytime television.”
“I am beyond thrilled, honored and completely surprised that I’ve been asked to join ‘The View’,” said Perez. “Knowing that I’ll be in the company of Whoopi, Rosie and Nicolle, three very smart and engaging women that I have an immense amount of respect for, makes it even more unbelievable. The opportunity to connect with our nation’s audience on a daily basis… icing on the cake! Very happy.”
“I am honored to join the tradition of compelling conversations that has been the signature of ‘The View’ for the better part of two decades,” said Wallace. “I have watched ‘The View’ for many years and now to be seated alongside three women that I have admired is both humbling and incredibly exciting.”