Not only is it good to be the queen, but it’s hard to give up the throne. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Oprah Winfrey has reconsidered last year’s announcement that she would wrap up her top-rated daytime talk show in 2006, after 20 years in syndication. Instead, she’s in talks to keep talking for another two years, through 2008. Plus, Oprah and syndicator King World are likely to reap higher fees for the extra two years, as the seven ABC-owned stations that carry the show had to outbid CBS-owned stations to keep the extended contract.
Winfrey’s decision could shake up daytime in the same way that her announcement of retirement did last year. Shows developed in the interim, for hosts Wayne Brady and Ellen DeGeneres, may get squeezed out of the afternoon lineups. Even Oprah protege Dr. Phil McGraw may get bumped; stations hoping to book him in Winfrey’s timeslot won’t be able to do so because of ”Dr. Phil”’s non-compete clause with its progenitor. Talk about tough love.