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Backlash Over Drew Barrymore Resuming Her Talk Show, Explained


These days, TV has been rife with controversy due to the ongoing strikes of writers and actors around the industry. Now, Drew Barrymore is part of the controversy surrounding the strike. Barrymore is getting backlash for returning to work and resuming episodes of the Drew Barrymore Show.

The star’s daytime talk show wrapped production earlier in 2023, right before the Writers Guild of America strikes started in May. Some people thought that she shut the show down in solidarity but were confused when the actress stated that her show would be airing in September during the strike. 

Does The Drew Barrymore Show violate strike rules?

As Barrymore has been a working actress since the young age of five and is a SAG-AFTRA member, the fact that she has a talk show excludes her from the other contracts that have failed to reach a deal after expiring. Like sports, reality TV, and morning news shows, those who star in talk shows aren’t on strike right now. 

While the celebrity herself hasn’t directly violated the many strikes going on, its WGA-member workers have been left behind. 

Why The Drew Barrymore Show is Being Picketed

When the news was announced, picketers took their stance in NYC, outside the CBS Broadcast Center. 

Despite the network’s insistent that the show is in compliance with the strikes, Barrymore put herself in deep water after two audience members revealed that they were asked to leave the taping after wearing WGA pins. 

Along with this talk show, picketers have been standing outside the filming locations of The View, who also decided to move on without WGA writers. The show initially decided to move on to film the next season without three of its unionized writers.

In response, the WGA released a statement saying that Drew’s show shouldn’t be on air while her writers were fighting for justice and working to get a fair deal. The statement further explained that shows like this don’t operate without writing.

Drew Barrymore’s apology video. 

In a clip where she stated that she wanted to remain responsible for her actions, Barrymore said, “I know there’s just nothing I can do that will make this OK for those it is not OK with,” Barrymore said. 


“I fully accept that, I fully understand that. There are so many reasons why this is so complex, and I just want everyone to know my intentions have never been in a place to upset or hurt anyone. It’s not who I am.”

Despite her tearful and supposedly sincere apologies, she’s been called a “union buster” by many who disagree with her decision. Others believe that the celebrity would prolong the SAG strike by continuing with her show rather than standing in solidarity. 

Despite letting folks know that she was sorry, she defended her choice brazenly and said that she owned her choice, adding,  “We are in compliance with not discussing or promoting film and television that is struck of any kind. We launched live during a global pandemic. Our show was built for sensitive times and has only functioned through what the real world is going through in real time.”

Drew Barrymore backtracks on her plan to resume the show

In more recent news, the actress and host has made the decision to pause production on The Drew Barrymore show until the strike is over. This was in response to the backlash she received for continuing to film through these difficult times. 

Although it was previously announced that the show would start production on Season 4, the heated reaction has caused the star to make a different and shocking decision. 

She even deleted her apology video, which was posted on September 15. She announced the fact on her Instagram, writing, “I have listened to everyone, and I am making the decision to pause the show’s premiere until the strike is over,” adding, “I truly hope for a resolution for the entire industry very soon.”

What happens next?

Despite swiftly changing her mind in a surprising move, nobody knows what will happen. Will she unpause? Will she start another business venture instead? The Hollywood strikes have turned the whole industry upside down. 

Hopefully, with more celebs showing solidarity and both sides agreeing to go back to negotiations, a solution will be reached soon.