Wendy Williams is shopping her tell-all story to major TV networks, demanding an hour-long, prime-time slot, DailyMailTV can exclusively reveal.
Wendy’s quest comes as the future of her own show is uncertain – she has stopped attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, leading to fears of a relapse, say show insiders.
The scandal plagued daytime talk show host, who is divorcing her cheating husband Kevin Hunter and publicly battling alcohol abuse, wants to capitalize on her recent troubles and create a positive buzz around her and her show.
Adding even more drama to her personal life, Wendy’s son who she shares with Hunter, Kevin Hunter Jr, 19, was arrested for assault on Tuesday night after punching Hunter in the face following an argument over the couple’s divorce.
Williams has approached all the big players, including ABC, NBC and Oprah’s OWN, and her offer of an emotional no holds barred interview is being considered, according to several network sources.
But one network source told DailyMailTV the sticking point is Williams’ demand for an hour-long prime time slot.
Wendy Williams wants to capitalize on her recent troubles and create a positive buzz around her and her show by selling her tell-all story to a TV network
The scandal hit daytime talk show host, who is divorcing her cheating husband Kevin Hunter and publicly battling alcohol abuse, wants to capitalize on her recent troubles and create a positive buzz around her and her show
Wendy shopping her tell-all story comes as The Wendy Williams Show has been plunged into chaos in the aftermath of her public addiction crisis and split with Hunter. She filed for divorce from Hunter in April after the revelation his mistress Sharina Hudson gave birth to a girl
The source said: ‘Her people wanted a morning show initially but then the idea came along for her to get an hour long prime time slot, which most of the networks have balked at.
‘An hour of Wendy time is a lot of time. Gayle King didn’t even give R Kelly an hour. The other concern for the networks is which of their star names would sit down with her.’
DailyMailTV has also learned The Wendy Williams Show has been plunged into chaos in the aftermath of her public addiction crisis and split with Hunter and his departure from the show.
‘Say what you will about Kevin,’ one show source told DailyMailTV,’ but he ran a tight ship.’
A show source told DailyMailTV that Williams has also stopped attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, sparking more concern for her well being.
At her talk show, Williams is said to be cleaning house with a string of show executives leaving and insiders claim the atmosphere has turned ‘toxic’ since Hunter was kicked out.
Long time co-executive producer Talia Parkinson-Jones is one senior executive who was recently reported as departing, with others soon to follow.
Williams, 54, has also picked up a new manager and assistant in a bid to start fresh.
The unrest has sparked rumors on set over the future of The Wendy Williams Show with its current contract expiring in the summer of 2020.
Show insiders tell DailyMailTV that a decision to renew the show beyond next year would typically have been made already, but Fox appears to be stalling.
It’s understood network chiefs are concerned that Williams could relapse, costing them losses.
Williams’ show went on an indefinite hiatus in January and February this year due to what Williams claimed was a shoulder injury and worsening complications from Graves’ disease.
But DailyMailTV later exclusively revealed that in fact the absence was due to alcohol addiction and she entered a rehab facility in Florida.
Williams’ absence cost the show a staggering $1 million in lost ad revenue from major sponsors, DailyMailTV can reveal.
One show insider said: ‘Some major sponsors, including Walmart, had to cut campaigns because of Wendy’s absence.
‘The show lost $1 million in ad revenue. That’s had a knock on effect and the show has had to cut certain people’s salaries which has been a major issue.’
According to sources connected to the show Williams’ two co-presidents, Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein at production and syndication firm Deb-Mar Mercury, were in town last week from Los Angeles for crunch talks with the star.
Staff members are also furious because the star’s prolonged absence left dozens of the show’s technical crew without pay while it was off air.
‘People are upset and the atmosphere is toxic,’ the insider said.
‘People are backstabbing each other and Wendy’s decisions are causing further chaos.
‘Kevin was not well liked but at least he kept things together, he kept people in check.
‘He also kept Wendy sheltered from the production staff but the change has sparked infighting, with many senior staff jostling for better positions in the company.’
The source added that a lot of staff members are concerned over whether Williams is back on the booze.
‘She has been going out partying after work and comes into the show in the morning with her big sunglasses on, no one knows for sure but everyone is worried for her,’ said one insider.
‘The problem is Wendy doesn’t think she has a problem, she never did, she just put it down to drinking too much because of the stress of her marriage breaking down.
‘She certainly doesn’t see herself as an alcoholic.’
The source claims her attitude is also the reason behind the decision last week to dissolve the Hunter Foundation, the charity her and her estranged husband set up together to help people battling substance abuse.
Reports claimed Williams decided to end the foundation because she didn’t want to be associated with Hunter anymore.
But the reality is she wants to distance herself from addiction recovery, the source revealed.
‘Yes Kevin was part of it, but she said she doesn’t want to be around ”those people” as she calls the addicts the foundation was helping,’ the source said.
‘She doesn’t see herself as an addict and she’s scared people will refer to her as the ”recovery girl”.
‘She also doesn’t want to speak at any engagements any more, if she does she wants a fee.
‘Her view is that she can just cut a check and give it to people in need rather than having a whole foundation.’
The Foundation was launched in 2014 and Williams and Hunter would hold food and clothing drives for the under-privileged, before shifting the focus to victims of substance abuse.
Then they launched the Be Here campaign last year to combat drug addiction, setting up a website which is now defunct.
Williams became the face of addiction with the campaign and earlier this year an addiction hotline was set up.
Hunter said in a statement: ‘Although The Hunter Foundation in its current form will dissolve, the important work will live on. I plan on launching a new foundation in the near future to continue the important mission in helping those struggling with drug addiction and substance abuse.’
Now that the foundation gone and several people are expected to lose their jobs.
The source also claims that after Williams announced on her daytime talk show that she was staying in a sober house and fighting addiction – a statement prompted by a DailyMailTV exclusive revealing she was in rehab – Hunter took her phone away from her.
‘Wendy hated not having her phone so she would try to steal staff members’ phones to use them and would often get in fights with people,’ the source said.
DailyMailTV also revealed Williams relapsed in March not long after she announced she was staying at the sober house.
The source claims that on the day she relapsed Williams asked a security guard at the studio if she could borrow his phone to call an Uber.
The source says: ‘The guard gave her his phone and that’s how Wendy was able to leave the studio, she ordered an Uber and sneaked out undetected to go on a booze bender.
‘Kevin was furious, the guard was fired immediately, apparently Kevin had given strict instructions to staff not to allow Wendy to use their phones.’
Williams has been out in public frequently since announcing her divorce, with reports she’s even dating again.
Most recently she appeared at Real Housewives of Atlanta star Kandi Burruss’ Welcome to the Dungeon burlesque show in New York.
And on her talk show she revealed she went all night partying with Blac Chyna on May 16 after the former stripper appeared on her show the day before.
In April, Williams revealed she had filed for divorce from her husband of over 20 years Kevin.
The divorce news came after months of allegations regarding Hunter’s cheating, and the revelation he had fathered a daughter with his decade-long mistress massage therapist named Sharina Hudson.