Whoopi Goldberg, Sherri Shepherd Recall Bill Geddie’s Support During ‘View’ Controversies

TV

The View paid tribute today to the late Bill Geddie, the show’s co-creator with Barbara Walters and longtime executive producer who died July 20 of coronary issues.

In addition to clips featuring Geddie’s usually comic appearances on the show, View moderator Whoopi Goldberg and current and past panelists remembered their old boss with affection and candor.

“He was 68 years old, really cranky and really funny,” Goldberg said at the start of the segment.

Watch clips from the tribute below.

Both Goldberg and former co-host Sherri Shepherd recalled how Geddie offered words of support and encouragement during times of controversy and backlash.

For Shepherd, the controversy came early in her View tenure when, in 2007, she suggested she didn’t know if the earth was round or flat. “I’ve never thought about it.” Shepherd said at the time, but today said that after the episode, she told Geddie she knew the earth was round and wanted to clarify her statement. “Bill said, ‘No! This is ratings, baby!’”

Geddie, Shepherd said, advised her that “if we apologize for everything this would be called The Apology Show. It’s called The View.

Goldberg noted that she received Geddie’s support during two particularly difficult times: The first, in 2007, when she defended football player Michael Vick for participating in illegal dogfighting; and the second, in 2022, when she was suspended from the show for two weeks (she had said the Holocaust was “not about race”; she later apologized).

“I was asked to stay off for a week or two,” Goldberg said today without going into detail on the incident, “and Bill wrote to me and said, ‘You know, this is the nature of this show, that’s why we brought you in. We’re paying you to give your opinion.’”

Co-host Sunny Hostin recalled her audition for The View, and how she passively observed her fellow auditioners as they debated a topic. “Were you watching a ping pong match?,” Geddie scolded, then told Hostin, “You’re supposed to be on the show, not watching the show.” As recently as a few weeks before he died, Hostin said, Geddie, who left the show in 2014, messaged her to say, “‘I told you to lean in, you’re leaning out’…I couldn’t believe he was still providing guidance.”

Ana Navarro, an anti-Trump Republican, said she was surprised to learn, upon first meeting Geddie, that he was a “staunch Republican.”

“We’ve been through good leadership [on this show] and bad leadership and there’s no doubt Bill was a good leader,” Navarro said.

Longtime co-host Joy Behar was off today and will offer her own remembrances on tomorrow’s episode, Goldberg said. In a statement posted on social media last week, Behar wrote, “Bill loved comedy and plenty of laughs not to mention a good cigar. I’m forever grateful to him and Barbara for the opportunity to be on the View.”

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