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Roseann "Rosie" O'Donnell (born March 21, 1962) is an American stand-up comedienne, actress, singer, author and media personality. She has also been a magazine editor and continues to be a celebrity blogger, LGBT rights activist, television producer and collaborative partner in the LGBT family vacation company R Family Vacations.

Raised Roman Catholic, O'Donnell lost her mother to cancer as a pre-teen and has stressed the importance of protecting children and supporting families throughout her career. O'Donnell started her comedy career while still a teenager and her big break was on the talent show Star Search when she was twenty years old. A TV sitcom and a series of movies introduced her to a larger national audience and in 1996 she started hosting The Rosie O'Donnell Show which won multiple Emmy awards.

During her years on The Rosie O'Donnell Show she wrote her first book, a memoir called Find Me and developed the nickname "Queen Of Nice" as well as a reputation for philanthropic efforts. She used the book's $3 million advance to establish her own For All Kids foundation and promoted other charity projects encouraging other celebrities on her show to also take part. O'Donnell came out stating "I'm a dyke!" two months before finishing her talk show run, saying that her primary reason was to bring attention to gay adoption issues.[2] O'Donnell is a foster—and adoptive—mother. She has since continued to support many LGBT causes and issues.

In 2006 O'Donnell became the new moderator on The View boosting ratings and attracting controversies with her liberal views, and strong personality, dominating many of the conversations. She became a polarizing figure to many and her strong opinions resulted in several notable controversies including an on-air dispute regarding The Bush administration's policies with the war in Iraq resulting in a mutual agreement to cancel her contract. In 2007 O'Donnell also released her second memoir, Celebrity Detox, which focuses on her struggles with fame and her time at The View. She continues to do charity work and remains involved with LGBT and family-related issues.

In 2008 O'Donnell starred in and executive produced a Lifetime original movie called America, in which she plays the therapist of the title character, a 16-year-old boy aging out of the foster care system. The film is based on the E.R. Frank book of the same name.[3]

In November 2009 "Rosie Radio", a daily two-hour show with O'Donnell discussing news and events on Sirius XM Radio, premiered. O'Donnell said she was approached by the company after she appeared on The Howard Stern Show.[4][5] O'Donnell has signed on with the Oprah Winfrey Network to return to daytime TV with a talk show in Fall 2011. [6]

Early life

O'Donnell, the third of five children, was born in Bayside, Queens, New York and raised in Commack, Long Island, New York. She is the daughter of Roseann Teresa (née Murtha), a homemaker, and Edward Joseph O'Donnell, an electrical engineer who worked in the defense industry.[7] O'Donnell's father had immigrated from County Donegal, Ireland during his childhood, and her mother was Irish American; O'Donnell was raised Catholic.[8][9] Four days before her 11th birthday, on March 17, 1973, O'Donnell's mother died of breast cancer.[10]

While she attended Commack High School, O'Donnell was voted homecoming queen, prom queen, senior class president and class clown.[11] It was during high school that she began exploring her interest in comedy, beginning with a skit performed in front of the school in which she imitated Gilda Radner's character Roseanne Rosannadanna.[10] After graduating in 1980, O'Donnell briefly attended Dickinson College, later transferring to Boston University, before ultimately dropping out of college.[11]

Early career

Stand-up/club comedienne

O'Donnell toured stand-up clubs from 1979 to 1984.[12] She got her first big break on Star Search, explaining on Larry King Live:[13]

I was 20 years old, and I was at a comedy club in Long Island. This woman came over to me and she said, I think you're funny. Can you give me your number? My dad is Ed McMahon. I was like, yeah, right. I gave her my father's phone number. I was living at home, I'm like, whatever. And about three days later, the talent booker from Star Search called and said, we're going to fly you out to L.A. [...] I won, like, five weeks in a row. And it gave me national exposure.

TV career begins


O'Donnell at the Emmy Awards in 1992

After this success, she moved on to television sitcom comedy, making her series debut as Nell Carter's neighbor on Gimme a Break! in 1986.

In 1988, she transferred to VH1, where she hosted Stand-up Spotlight, a showcase for up-and-coming comedians and comediennes. In 1992 she starred in Stand By Your Man, a Fox Network sitcom co-starring Melissa Gilbert. The show bombed, just as O'Donnell's movie career took off.

Movie career

O'Donnell made her feature film debut in A League Of Their Own alongside Tom Hanks and Madonna.[9] Throughout her career, she has taken on an eclectic range of roles: she appeared in Sleepless in Seattle as Meg Ryan's best friend; as Betty Rubble in the live-action film adaptation of The Flintstones with John Goodman; as one of Timothy Hutton's co-stars in Beautiful Girls; as a federal agent comedically paired with Dan Aykroyd in Exit to Eden; as the voice of a tomboyish female gorilla named Terk in Disney's Tarzan; and as a baseball-loving nun in M. Night Shyamalan's Wide Awake.

The Rosie O'Donnell Show

In 1996, she began hosting a daytime talk show, The Rosie O'Donnell Show. The show proved very successful, winning multiple Emmy awards, and earning O'Donnell the title of "The Queen of Nice" for her style of light-hearted banter with her guests and interactions with the audience. As part of her playful banter with her studio audience, O'Donnell often launched koosh balls at the crowd and camera.[14] She also professed an infatuation with Tom Cruise.

With New York City as the show's homebase, O'Donnell displayed her love of Broadway musicals and plays by having cast members as guests, encouraging the audience to see shows, premiering production numbers as well as promoting shows with ticket give-aways. After the September 11, 2001 attacks Broadway and tourism in New York City was down and many shows were in danger of closing. O'Donnell was among many in the entertainment field who encouraged viewers to visit and support the performing arts. She announced that she would donate $1 million dollars for aid in the rescue efforts and encouraged other celebrities and citizens alike to "give till it hurts".

In 2002, she left her talk show. The show was then replaced by The Caroline Rhea Show, with comedienne Caroline Rhea and ran for one additional season.

Gun control issues

After the Columbine shootings, O'Donnell became an outspoken supporter of gun control and a major figure in the Million Mom March.[15][16] During the April 19, 1999, broadcast of her talk show, she stated, "You are not allowed to own a gun, and if you do own a gun, I think you should go to prison."[17] O'Donnell previously had remarked, "I don't personally own a gun, but if you are qualified, licensed and registered, I have no problem."[18]

In May 1999, a month after the Columbine shootings, O'Donnell interviewed Tom Selleck, who was promoting The Love Letter. O'Donnell confronted him about his recent commercial for the National Rifle Association (NRA) and challenged him about the NRA's position on the use of "assault weapons." She said at the end of the segment the conversation had "not gone the way I had hoped" and added "if you feel insulted by my questions, I apologize, because it was not a personal attack. It was meant to bring up the subject as it is in the consciousness of so many today."[19][20] Around the same time, the cast from Annie Get Your Gun was to appear on the show but refused O'Donnell's request to remove the line "I can shoot a partridge with a single cartridge" from the song "Anything You Can Do" and agreed to perform "My Defenses Are Down" instead.[21] Later in 1999, O'Donnell discontinued her contract with Kmart as their spokeswoman, as gun enthusiasts complained that she shouldn't be the spokesperson for the largest gun retailer. O'Donnell countered that Kmart sells hunting rifles, not handguns or assault weapons and does so legally which she supports. Both Kmart and O'Donnell denied publicly that Kmart had terminated the contract.[22]

In May 2000, O'Donnell's bodyguard applied for a concealed firearm permit. O'Donnell stated that the security firm contracted by Warner Brothers requested the gun. O'Donnell stated that because of threats, she and her family need protection, which she attributes to her "tough gun-control rhetoric".[23]

Charitable works

Charitable book deal

In May 1996, Warner Books advanced O'Donnell $3 million to write a memoir. She used the money to seed her For All Kids foundation to help institute national standards for day care across the country. Her memoir, Find Me, was released in April 2002 and became the second highest on the New York Times Bestseller List.[24]

Listerine charity kissing

San Francisco public relations firm Fineman Associates awarded top prize to Procter & Gamble Co.'s designation of O'Donnell as "unkissable" in a promotion for Scope mouthwash on the 1997 annual list of the nation's worst public relations blunders.[25] In response to the promotion, the "unkissable" O'Donnell partnered with Warner Lambert's competitor Listerine who donated bottles of mouthwash to the studio audience and donated $1,000 to charity every time a hosted guest would kiss her in exchange for O'Donnell promoting their product. On occasion, the guests would offer multiple kisses and People reported O'Donnell "smooched her way to more than $350,000."[26]

Personal contribution

In December 2006, at a one-night charity event on the Norwegian Pearl cruiseship, Elizabeth Birch, Executive Director for the Rosie's For All Kids Foundation, confirmed that $50 million from O'Donnell's five-year contract were donated in an irrevocable trust to charity.[27] She is also reported to have contributed several hundred thousand dollars for rehabilitation therapies for war veterans who have lost limbs in Iraq and Afghanistan wars. On The Tyra Banks Show [2], Tyra brought up to O'Donnell that people don't realize that Rosie has given more than $100 million to charity.[28]

"For All Kids" foundation

Since 1997, Rosie's For All Kids Foundation, overseen by Elizabeth Birch, has awarded more than $22 million in Early Childhood Care and Education program grants to over 900 nonprofit organizations.[29] On October 30, 2006, she was honored by the New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children.[30][31] "It's our privilege to be honoring and hosting Rosie," said NYSPCC president David Stack in a statement. "Her Rosie's for All Kids Foundation has awarded more than $22 million in grants to over 1,400 child-related organizations, and that's just one of her many impressive activities on behalf of children."

In November 2006 Nightline aired a video report about the opening of The Children's Plaza and Family Center in Renaissance Village, a FEMA trailer park in Louisiana.[32] This was an emergency response initiative of Rosie's For All Kids Foundation with the help of many local nonprofit organizations and for-profit businesses, all efforts were to assist the families displaced by Hurricane Katrina.

In May 2007 O'Donnell and Pogo Games announced a joint-effort to raise money for Rosie's All Kids Foundation. EA, which owns Pogo, committed $30,000 and more money can be raised based on the amount of playing time people spend on certain games. They also held a sweepstakes in which winners get to fly to New York and meet Rosie and attend a charity function as her guest.

"Rosie's Broadway Kids" foundation

In 2003, Rosie and Kelli O'Donnell collaborated with Artistic Director Lori Klinger to create "Rosie's Broadway Kids", dedicated to providing free instruction in music and dance to New York City public schools or students. Rosie's Broadway Kids serves more than 4,500 teachers, students, and their family members at 21 schools.[33] Currently programs are in Harlem, Midtown West, Chelsea, Lower East Side, East Village, and Chinatown. All net profits from O'Donnell's 2007 book Celebrity Detox are also being donated to Rosie's Broadway Kids.[34]

True Colors tour

During the summer of 2007 Rosie was a guest on the multi-artist True Colors Tour, which traveled through 15 cities in the United States and Canada.[35] The tour, sponsored by the gay cable channel Logo, began on June 8, 2007. Hosted by comedienne Margaret Cho and headlined by Cyndi Lauper, the tour also included Debbie Harry, Erasure, The Gossip, Rufus Wainwright, The Dresden Dolls, The MisShapes, Indigo Girls, The Cliks and other special guests. Profits from the tour helped to benefit the Human Rights Campaign as well as P-FLAG and The Matthew Shepard Foundation.[36]

Rosie appeared again on True Colors Tour 2008.

Rosie magazine

Main article: McCall's

In 2000, O'Donnell partnered with the publishers of McCall's to revamp the magazine as Rosie's McCall's (or, more commonly, Rosie). The magazine was launched as a competitor to fellow talk show hostess Oprah Winfrey's monthly magazine. Rosie covered issues including breast cancer, foster care and other matters of concern to O'Donnell. In the September 2000 issue she shared that "she has struggled with depression her entire life" and decided to start medications when she realized her fears were affecting her family.[37]

With a strong start and a circulation close to 3.5 million things looked promising but the magazine stumbled as conflicts emerged between O'Donnell and the editors. The contract gave O'Donnell control over editorial process and editorial staff but veto power remained with publisher Gruner+Jahr USA. O'Donnell quit the magazine in September 2002 following a dispute over editorial control. "If I'm going to have my name and my brand on the corner of a magazine, it has to be my vision" she told People.[38] Rosie magazine folded in 2003.

In late 2003, O'Donnell and the publishers each sued the other for breach of contract. The publishers claimed that, by removing herself from the magazine's publication, she was in breach of contract. The trial received considerable press coverage. O'Donnell would often give brief press interviews outside of the courtroom responding to various allegations. Of note was a former magazine colleague and breast cancer survivor who testified that O'Donnell said to her on the phone that people who lie "get sick and they get cancer. If they keep lying, they get it again".[39] O'Donnell apologized the next day and stated "I'm sorry I hurt her the way I did, that was not my intention." The judge ruled against both sides and dismissed the case.

In 2006, O'Donnell responded to a question on the "Ask Ro" section of her website in which she stated that she would love to do another magazine. In addition, O'Donnell has written a new book, Celebrity Detox, which was released on October 9, 2007.


In 2002, O'Donnell wrote Find Me, a combination of memoir, mystery and detective story with an underlying interest in re-uniting birth mothers with their children. In addition to cataloging her childhood and early adulthood, the book delved into O'Donnell's relationship with a woman with multiple personality disorder who posed as an under-aged teen who had become pregnant by rape. The book reached number two on the New York Times bestseller list.

On October 9, 2007, O'Donnell released Celebrity Detox, her second memoir which focuses on the struggles with leaving fame behind, noting her exits from The Rosie O'Donnell Show and The View.

Coming out

File:Rosie o donnell.jpg

O'Donnell at a tailgate party before a Barbra Streisand concert

In her January 31, 2002, appearance on the sitcom Will & Grace, she played a lesbian mom. A month later as part of her act at the Ovarian Cancer Research benefit at Caroline's Comedy Club O'Donnell came out as a lesbian, announcing "I'm a dyke!" "I don't know why people make such a big deal about the gay thing. ... People are confused, they're shocked, like this is a big revelation to somebody."[2] The announcement came two months before the end of the hosting of her talk show.

Although she also cited the need to put a face to gays and lesbians her primary reason was to bring attention to the gay adoption issue. O'Donnell is a foster and adoptive mother. She protested against adoption agencies, particularly in Florida, that refused adoptive rights to gay and lesbian parents.

Diane Sawyer interviewed O'Donnell in a March 14, 2002, episode of PrimeTime Thursday, telling USA Today she chose to talk to Sawyer because she wanted an investigative piece on Florida's ban on gay adoption. She told Sawyer if that was done, "I would like to talk about my life and how (the case) pertains to me." She spoke about the two gay men in Florida who face having a foster child they raised removed from their home. State law won't let them adopt because Florida bans gay or bisexual people from adopting.[2]

O'Donnell's coming out drew criticism from some LGBT activists who cited her repeated references to being enamored of Tom Cruise on The Rosie O'Donnell Show as deceptive.[2] She responded in her act stating, "I said I wanted him to mow my lawn and bring me a lemonade. I never said I wanted to blow him."[40]


After leaving her show and coming out, O'Donnell returned to stand-up comedy, and cut her hair. O'Donnell told the press that her haircut was meant to mimic the haircut of former Culture Club backup singer Helen Terry.[41] She subsequently attributed the haircut as a way to emulate Boy George, in hopes that he would allow her to produce his stage show Taboo. O'Donnell did invest in and produce the show, but it was an expensive failure on Broadway.

Family life


On February 26, 2004, O'Donnell married Kelli Carpenter, a former Nickelodeon marketing executive, in San Francisco two weeks after SF's Mayor Gavin Newsom authorized the granting of marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Her decision to go to San Francisco to marry Carpenter was seen as a show of defiance against then-President George W. Bush over his support for the Federal Marriage Amendment.

"We were both inspired to come here after the sitting president made the vile and hateful comments he made... [O]ne thought ran through my mind on the plane out here – with liberty and justice for all.[42]

The couple were married by San Francisco Treasurer Susan Leal, one of the city's highest ranking lesbian officials and they were serenaded by the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus.[42] On ABC's "Good Morning America", O'Donnell said during the trial over Rosie magazine she had decided to marry Carpenter, in part because even though they acted as spouses they legally were no closer than friends.[42]

"We applied for spousal privilege and were denied it by the state. As a result, everything that I said to Kelli, every letter that I wrote her, every e-mail, every correspondence and conversation was entered into the record ... I am now and will forever be a total proponent of gay marriage."[42]

In mid-November 2009, O'Donnell disclosed that Carpenter moved out of their home in 2007; a month later, O'Donnell was seen publicly with her new girlfriend, Tracy Kachtick-Anders, a Texas-based artist.[43]


O'Donnell and Carpenter are parents to adopted children Parker Jaren (born 1995), Chelsea Belle (born 1997), and Blake Christopher (born 1999). Their fourth child, Vivienne Rose (who was conceived through artificial insemination), was born in 2002 to Carpenter. In 2000 the family took in a foster child Mia (born in 1997), and announced intentions to adopt her. In 2001 the state of Florida removed Mia from their home, and Rosie has since worked extensively to bring an end to the Florida law prohibiting same-sex family adoption.[44][45]

Rosie and her family currently reside in Nyack, New York, a suburb of New York City that is located in Rockland County and in Miami's Star Island. O'Donnell's brother Daniel, who is also gay, represents the Upper West Side of Manhattan as a member of the New York State Assembly.[46]

R Family Vacations

Main article: R Family Vacations

In 2003 O'Donnell and Carpenter partnered with travel entrepreneur Gregg Kaminsky to launch R Family Vacations catering to gays and lesbians, "the very first all gay and lesbian family vacation packages" where "gays and lesbians can bring their kids, their friends, and their parents."[47] Although O'Donnell is not involved on a day-to-day basis, she does contribute to the creative aspects of "advertising and marketing materials" and initiated the idea for the company when she filled in as a last-minute replacement headliner on one of Kaminsky's Atlantis Events gay cruises and also came up with the name "R Family Vacations."[48]

On July 11, 2004, the first cruise was held with 1600 passengers[49] including 600 children.[50] In addition to traditional entertainment and recreational activities, the company partnered with Provincetown's Family Pride, a 25-year-old Washington, D.C.-based organization that advocates for GLBT families[51] to host discussions on "adoption, insemination, surrogacy, and everything else that would be helpful to gay parenting."[52] All Aboard! Rosie's Family Cruise, a documentary film about the trip debuted on HBO on April 6, 2006, and was nominated for three Emmy Awards. Of the experience O'Donnell stated "we didn't really realize the magic that was going to take place. People who had never met another gay family met other families and it was powerful."[50]

The View

In September 2006, O'Donnell replaced Meredith Vieira as a co-host and moderator of the daytime women-oriented daytime talkshow The View. Star Jones, a co-host on the show, quit with some speculating Jones's conservative views would be in constant tension with O'Donnell's more liberal counterpoint. O'Donnell had also disputed Jones's route of rapid weight loss, alluding that it must have been gastric bypass surgery rather than dieting and exercise alone as Star had insisted which also fed speculation about certain tension between the two. As a big-name talent O'Donnell drew criticism for her opinions while keeping the show's "buzz factor up".[53] O'Donnell is credited with helping the show be more news-focused while still embracing the "fluff" of daytime TV talkshows (celebrities, fashion and food).[54] Despite the overall downward trend for most daytime broadcast shows, ratings rose by 27%. The show was the fourth most watched in all of daytime in the key demographic of women ages 18–49, and scored record ratings in the total viewer category with an average of 3.4 million viewers—up 15% versus the same time in 2005.[55] O'Donnell adapted to the multi-personality forum in contrast to her anchoring her own talkshows in the past and moderated the opening "Hot Topics" portion of the show where newsworthy items were discussed. Unlike previous years, politics and taboo subjects were readily explored with O'Donnell and fellow-comic Joy Behar often giving strong opinions against former President Bush's domestic and foreign policies including the Iraq war. As a conservative counterpoint, Elisabeth Hasselbeck would support the Bush Administration's issues and the two would get into an adversarial give-and-take. Always outspoken, O'Donnell sometimes provoked debate, one time stating "radical Christianity is just as threatening as radical Islam" or criticizing fellow TV personalities. In January 2007, she questioned American Idol for airing auditions that humiliated contestants.[56] O'Donnell's outspokeness and spontaneousness sometimes led to her views being recirculated by other media outlets, often surprising The View co-hosts including O'Donnell.[57][58] Frequently portrayed unfavorably by conservative media outlets and what she deemed as Republican pundits, O'Donnell lamented that they were focusing on her comments instead of more important national or world issues like the ongoing Iraq War and more serious national and international issues.[58] Perhaps as a result of her famous controversies O'Donnell was named "The Most Annoying Celebrity of 2007" by a PARADE reader's poll.[59] O'Donnell responded by stating "Frankly, most celebrities are annoying ... and I suppose I am the most annoying, but, whatever."[59]

In 2008, The View won an Emmy for "Outstanding Special Class Writing" for a specially themed Autism episode broadcast when O'Donnell was co-host. Janette Barber, O'Donnell's longtime friend and producer/writer of the Rosie O'Donnell Show, accepted the award on behalf of herself and the other two winners, Christian McKiernan and Andrew Smith.[60][61]

Chinese parody

On December 5, 2006, O'Donnell used a series of ching chongs to imitate newscasters in China.[62] O'Donnell made a comment in reference to people in China talking about Danny DeVito's drunken appearance on the show, "You know, you can imagine in China it's like, 'Ching-chong, ching-chong. Danny DeVito. Ching-chong, ching-chong-chong. Drunk. The View. Ching-chong.'"[63] The Asian American Journalists Association said her comments were "a mockery of the Chinese language and, in effect, a perpetuation of stereotypes of Asian Americans as foreigners or second-class citizens ... and gives the impression that they are a group that is substandard to English-speaking people"[64] Cindi Berger, O'Donnell's representative, said: "She's a comedian in addition to being a talk show co-host. I certainly hope that one day they will be able to grasp her humor." On December 14 on the The View, O'Donnell said she was unaware that ching chong was an offensive way to make fun of Asian accents, and she was informed it was on par with the "N-word". She apologized to "those people who felt hurt".[65] Critics were disappointed at her insensitivity when she has fought for gay and lesbian rights and spoken out against homophobia.[66] Jeff Yang, who tracks Asian and Asian-American trends for a market research firm, said O'Donnell shouldn't have apologized for people's hurt feelings. "She should have apologized for spreading and encouraging ignorance."[62] O'Donnell warned that "there's a good chance I'll do something like that again, probably in the next week, not on purpose. Only 'cause it's how my brain works."[66]

Donald Trump incident

In December 2006, O'Donnell criticized billionaire Donald Trump for holding a press conference to reinstate Miss USA Tara Conner, accusing him of using her scandal to "generate publicity for the Miss USA Pageant" (to which he owns the rights) by announcing he was giving her a second chance.[67] Conner had violated pageant guidelines by clubbing and drinking underage, as well as having "wild nights" and alleged sexual liaisons (including kissing and "dirty dancing") with Katie Blair, Miss Teen USA, in public, yet was allowed to keep her crown on condition that she enter drug rehabilitation.[67][68] O'Donnell commented that due to Trump's multiple marital affairs and questionable business bankruptcies, he was not a moral authority for young people in America. She stated, "Left the first wife, had an affair. Left the second wife, had an affair – but he's the moral compass for 20-year-olds in America!"[69] In response, Trump began a mass media blitz in which he appeared on various television shows, either in person or by phone, threatening to sue O'Donnell.[70] He called names, threatened to take away her partner Kelli, and claimed that Barbara Walters regretted hiring her.[18][70][71][72] Walters responded that both Trump and O'Donnell are highly opinionated people and that Trump has never filed for bankruptcy, but several of his casino companies did but are now out of bankruptcy. She also denied that she was unhappy with O'Donnell, saying, "I have never regretted, nor do I now, the hiring of Rosie O'Donnell."[72]

Accusations of anti-Catholicism

O'Donnell has been accused of serial anti-Catholicism and labeled a bigot by Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League, for what he claimed "relentless and profoundly ignorant attacks on the Catholic Church and its teachings."[73][74] On the 24 February 2003 episode of Phil Donahue's talk show O'Donnell referred to the "pedophile scandal"* in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston resulting in $157 million awarded to 983 claimants,[75][76][77][78][79] stating "I hope the Catholic Church gets sued until the end of time. Maybe, you know, we can melt down some of the gold toilets in the Pope's Vatican and pay off some of the lawsuits because, the whole tenet of living a Christ-like life, has been lost in Catholicism."[80]

On The View O'Donnell joked about communion rituals alongside co-host Behar's drunk priest comments.[81] On 2 October 2006 she compared the Republican Party cover-up of the Mark Foley scandal to the cover-up of child sexual abuse by Catholic Church officials who actively concealed perpetrators by moving them from parish to parish as detailed in Amy Berg's award-winning film about the abuse within the Catholic Church.[82][83] O'Donnell said "the most interesting thing about Deliver Us from Evil (is) that the person who was in charge of investigating all the allegations of pedophilia in the Catholic Church from the 1980s until just recently was guess who? The current Pope."[76][81] Although Joseph Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI) was the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith from November 1981 to April 2005, responsibility to investigate sexual abuse of minors by priests only started in 2001 and he has denounced the abuse.[84][85][86]

On April 19, 2007 the all-woman panel on The View discussed the Supreme Court of the United States ruling on Gonzales v. Carhart decision upholding the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act. O'Donnell cited a Florynce Kennedy quote, "If men could get pregnant abortion would be a sacrament" and asked rhetorically "How many Supreme Court judges are Catholic?" and "[H]ow about separation of church and state?" Some conservatives called her statements "anti-Catholic bigotry" and suggested that such statements against other religions would not be tolerated.[87][88][89]

O'Donnell/Hasselbeck argument

O'Donnell has condemned many of the Bush administration's policies, especially the war in Iraq and the resulting occupation.[90] She consistently brought up recent military deaths and news about the war, and has criticized the US media for its lack of attention to these issues. On May 17, 2007, O'Donnell rhetorically asked,

655,000 Iraqi civilians dead. Who are the terrorists? ... if you were in Iraq and another country, the United States, the richest in the world, invaded your country and killed 655,000 of your citizens, what would you call us?[91]

Conservative commentators responded by claiming O'Donnell was comparing American soldiers to terrorists. On May 23, 2007, a heated discussion ensued, in part, because of what O'Donnell perceived as Elisabeth Hasselbeck's unwillingness to defend O'Donnell as not against the troops with O'Donnell asking her "Do you believe I think our troops are terrorists?" Hasselbeck answered in the negative but also stated "Defend your own insinuations."[92][93][94][95] O'Donnell stated that Republican pundits were mischaracterising her statements and the right-wing media would portray her as a bully attacking "innocent pure Christian Elisabeth" whenever they disagreed. Despite repeated attempts by their co-hosts to change the topic or cut to a commercial break, O'Donnell and Hasselbeck continued their debate.

According to ABC News, O'Donnell said that she knew her time on the show was over when she saw on the studio monitor that the director had made a decision to cut to a split screen effect showing her and Hasselbeck on either side. O'Donnell and ABC agreed to cut short her contract agreement on May 25, 2007, as a result of this issue. ABC News reported that her arguments with Hasselbeck brought the show its best ratings ever.[96]


On April 25, 2007, O'Donnell announced she would be leaving the show as a co-host when her contract expired because the network could not come to terms on the length of a new contract, but that she planned to return as an occasional correspondent.[97] On the April 30, 2007, show Walters announced that O'Donnell would be listed by Time magazine as one of their 100 most influential people.[98] On May 25, 2007, it was announced by ABC and O'Donnell that she would not stay until the end of her contract (which was supposed to end on June 21, 2007). On September 4, 2007, Whoopi Goldberg replaced O'Donnell as moderator as per O'Donnell's suggestion.


In March 2007, O'Donnell started a video blog, Jahero, on her website answering fans questions, giving behind the scenes information and serving as a video diary. Originally featuring only O'Donnell and her hair and make-up artist Helene Macaulay they were soon joined by her writer from The Rosie O'Donnell Show, Janette Barber.[99] Called Jahero, which has each of their first name's letters in it, they occasionally had short cameo appearances by View co-hosts Joy Behar, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, and Barbara Walters. Jenny McCarthy appeared once briefly, as has Hasselbeck's mother-in-law and O'Donnell's mother-in-law, her wife Kelli's mother. Kathy Griffin also appeared, where she read some of the questions. It became so popular that O'Donnell and her creative team considered an "on the road" version of the video blog utilizing fan-submitted suggestions. O'Donnell was the front runner for the "best celebrity blogger" category in the 2007 Blogger's Choice Awards which she won.[100]

O'Donnell expressed interest in replacing long-time host Bob Barker when he retired from CBS's game show The Price Is Right. Barker was a frequent guest on her talk show and told reporters that she "would make a fine host." Although it was reported he had "endorsed" her as a "possible successor", Barker said that he had no role in choosing his replacement.[101][102] In June 2007, she announced on her blog it was not going to happen and noted she was reluctant to uproot her family to move to California.

In November 2009 "Rosie Radio", a daily two-hour show with O'Donnell discussing news and events on Sirius XM Radio, premiered. The show is on Stars channel 102 from 10am to 12noon Eastern time, with replays in the afternoon, premiered. O'Donnell said she was approached by the company after she appeared on Howard Stern's Sirius XM show.[4][5]


  • Gimme a Break! NBC (cast member 1986–1987)
  • Stand-Up Spotlight VH1 (1988–1991)
  • Stand by Your Man FOX (1992)
  • The Rosie O'Donnell Show Syndicated (1996–2002) (also producer and executive producer)
  • The Twilight of the Golds Showtime (1997)
  • Jackie's Back! Lifetime (1999) (cameo)
  • Will & Grace NBC (2002) (recurring role)
  • Riding the Bus with My Sister CBS (2005 TV movie) (also executive producer)
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm HBO (2005)
  • Queer as Folk Showtime (2005) (recurring role)
  • All Aboard! Rosie's Family Cruise HBO (2006) (also documentary's producer and executive producer)
  • The View ABC (September 5, 2006 – May 27, 2007's Moderator)
  • Nip/Tuck FX (2006) (two episodes in Season 4, four episodes in Season 5)
  • Little Britain USA HBO (2008) (Series 1, Episode 1)
  • Rosie Live! NBC (2008) (also producer and executive producer)
  • Christmas In Rockefeller Center 2008 NBC (2008)
  • America Lifetime (2009) (also executive producer and screenplay)
  • Stalking Streisand HBO (2009)
Award ceremonies:
  • Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards (Host) (1997–2003)
  • 54th Annual Tony Awards (Host) (2000)
  • 42nd Annual Grammy Awards (Host) (2000)
  • Rosie Radio SIRIUS XM (2009)
  • Grease (1994) (as Betty Rizzo)
  • Seussical (2001) (replacement for David Shiner)
  • Fiddler on the Roof (2004) (replacement for Andrea Martin in 2005)
  • A League of Their Own (1992)
  • Sleepless in Seattle (1993)
  • Another Stakeout (1993)
  • Fatal Instinct (1993)
  • Car 54, Where Are You? (1994)
  • I'll Do Anything (1994)
  • The Flintstones (1994)
  • Exit to Eden (1994)
  • Now and Then (1995)
  • Beautiful Girls (1995)
  • Harriet the Spy (1996)
  • A Very Brady Sequel (1996) (Cameo)
  • Wide Awake (1998)
  • Get Bruce (1999) (documentary about Bruce Vilanch)
  • Tarzan (1999) (voice)
  • Artists and Orphans: A True Drama (2001) (short subject) (narrator)
  • Hedwig and the Angry Inch (2001) (Archive footage)
  • Last Party 2000 (2001) (documentary)
  • The Lady in Question Is Charles Busch (2005) (documentary)
  • Show Business (2005) (documentary)
  • Pursuit of Equality (2005) (documentary)
  • All Aboard! Rosie's Family Cruise (2006) (documentary) (also executive producer)
  • Find Me (2002)
  • Celebrity Detox (2007)
  • Rosie O'Donnell's Crafty U: 100 Easy Projects The Whole Family Can Enjoy All Year Long (2008)
Year Album Chart positions
US Holiday US
1999 A Rosie Christmas 1 20
2000 Another Rosie Christmas 3 45
Year Single US Country Album
2000 "Santa on the Rooftop" (w/ Trisha Yearwood) 72 A Rosie Christmas

Nominations and awards

Daytime Emmy Awards:
  • 1997 Outstanding Talk/Service Show Host, Rosie O'Donnell
  • 1998 Outstanding Talk Show, The Rosie O'Donnell Show
  • 1998 Outstanding Talk/Service Show Host, Rosie O'Donnell (tied with Oprah Winfrey)
  • 1999 Outstanding Talk Show, The Rosie O'Donnell Show
  • 1999 Outstanding Talk Show Host, Rosie O'Donnell
  • 2000 Outstanding Talk Show, The Rosie O'Donnell Show
  • 2000 Outstanding Talk Show Host, Rosie O'Donnell
  • 2001 Outstanding Talk Show, The Rosie O'Donnell Show
  • 2001 Outstanding Talk Show Host, Rosie O'Donnell (tied with Regis Philbin)
  • 2002 Outstanding Talk Show, The Rosie O'Donnell Show
  • 2002 Outstanding Talk Show Host, Rosie O'Donnell
Emmy Awards:
  • 1999 Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Special, 52nd Annual Tony Awards
Kids' Choice Awards:
  • 2000 Hall of Fame Award


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  3. Rosie O'Donnell Is Coming to America" TV Guide. October 22, 2008. Retrieved on October 22, 2008.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Adam bryant (25 June 2009). "Rosie to launch radio show". TV Guide Online. Retrieved 2009-06-25. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 Outspoken Rosie O'Donnell gets serious about radio show Ann Oldenburg, USA Today, 26 October 2009.
  6. Friedman, Roger (September 21, 2010). "Rosie O’Donnell Producing Chaz Bono Film for Oprah Network". Showbiz 411. Retrieved September 21, 2010. 
  7. Rosie O'Donnell Biography (1962–)
  8. Parish, James Robert (1998). Rosie: The Rosie O'Donnell Story. Carroll & Graf. p. 12. ISBN 0786705426.  Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
  9. 9.0 9.1 Stated in interview on Inside the Actors Studio, 2005
  10. 10.0 10.1 Rosie O'Donnell Biography,
  11. 11.0 11.1 Rosie O'Donnell;
  12. Rosie O'Donnell profile, E! Online
  13. "Highlights of Interviews With Rosie O'Donnell", CNN Larry King Weekend, March 16, 2002.
  14. "Balls & Spheres", TV Acres
  15. Paulson, Amy (2000-05-08). "'Million Mom March' organizers hope to spur congressional action on gun legislation". CNN. Retrieved 2007-07-20. 
  16. Dougherty, Jon (2000-05-11). "Clinton friend leads Million Mom March". World Net Daily. Retrieved 2007-07-20. 
  17. Kopel, Dave; Paul Gallant & Joanne Eisen (2002-01-24). "Her Own Bodyguard". National Review. Retrieved 2007-07-20.  Cite uses deprecated parameter |coauthors= (help)
  18. 18.0 18.1 Silverman, Stephen (1998-09-11). "A Bodyguard for Rosie's Kid". People. Retrieved 2007-07-20.  Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "Stephen M. Silverman" defined multiple times with different content
  19. "TRANSCRIPT: Tom Selleck Visits "The Rosie O'Donnell Show"". NRA Winning Team. Retrieved 2007-07-11. 
  20. "Transcript of Tom Selleck & Rosie O'Donnell's NRA Discussion". JLRweb. Retrieved 2007-07-11.  Unknown parameter |first name= ignored (help)
  21. "Report: Lyrics Riled Rosie". People. 1999-03-01. Retrieved 2009-02-04. 
  22. New York Daily News, November 19, 1999 "Rosie Sticks to Her Guns By Unloading Kmart Gig" by Mitchell Fink
  23. J.A., Johnson Jr. (2000-05-25). "Rosie's Bodyguard Applies for Gun Permit". The Stamford Advocate. Retrieved 2007-06-16. 
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  26. "Rosie O'Donnell: Five Fun Facts". People. 2007. Retrieved 2007-05-31. 
  27. O'Donnell is Godmother of the 'Pearl;' Benefit Held 12/15
  28. The Tyra Banks Show, 2/26/09
  29. "Rosie's For All Kids Foundation". Retrieved 2007-08-23. 
  30. Columbia, David Patrick (2006-10-31). "Sunny and Warm". New York Social Diary. Retrieved 2008-02-20. 
  31. Jedell, Joan (2007). "Protecting the Children". The Hampton Sheet. Retrieved 2008-02-20. 
  32. Nightline Online: Rosie O'Donnell returns to Louisiana to help Katrina victims. ABC News Video]
  33. Rosie's Broadway Kids
  34. "Pink Picks Entertainment". Pink (magazine) (Fall 2007). Fall 2007. p. 18. 
  35. Hochman, Steve (2007-07-02). "Cyndi and Rosie (but no Britney) at Human Rights Campaign's 'True Colors' concert". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2007-07-11. [dead link]
  36. Chonin, Neva (2007-07-02). "Gay icons rock Berkeley for a cause in post-Pride 'True Colors' celebration O'Donnell is cattily amusing". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2007-07-11. 
  37. "How Rosie O'Donnell Beat Depression". ABC News. 2000-08-09. Retrieved 2007-07-04.  (New York section)
  38. The End of 'Rosie' Mag, Rosie O'Donnell: Biography 2007
  39. Cancer survivor: Rosie O'Donnell told her liars 'get cancer'
  40. Michael Musto, 2002-03-05. New York Columns – NY Mirror. Retrieved 2009-03-18.
  41. Rosie O'Donnell May Leave 'The View' Early, By Allie @ Gone Hollywood
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  43. Adam Bryant. "Rosie O'Donnell Is Dating Someone New". 
  44. Biography
  45. transcript of Larry King Live Interview of O'Donnell
  46. New York State Assembly – Assemblymember Daniel O'Donnell – 69th Assembly District
  47. Kaminsky, Gregg (2003-08-11). "Rosie O'Donnell Announces R Family Vacations". Out In Buffalo. Retrieved 2007-06-21. 
  48. Salvato, Ed. "R Family Vacations plies uncharted gay waters". Planet Out. Retrieved 2007-06-21. 
  49. "Q and A with Rosie and Kelli on "All Aboard! Rosie's Family Cruise"". Planet Out. 2006. Retrieved 2007-06-21. 
  50. 50.0 50.1 Davis, Andrew (2005-01-12). "Getting Away with R Family Vacations". Windy City Times. Retrieved 2007-06-21. 
  51. Williams, Bradley David (2004). "Families, Ahoy!". Out Smart Magazine. Archived from the original on 2007-08-08. Retrieved 2007-06-21.  Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
  52. Wieder, Judy (2003). "R We Ready for R Family Vacations?". Out Traveler. Retrieved 2007-06-21.  (Fall issue)
  53. "The Future of The View" TV Guide, June 3, 2006. Retrieved on 2007-06-05.
  54. The View (Season 10) | TV Review | Entertainment Weekly
  55. O'Donnell brings big ratings to 'The View' Daytime talk show nabs best-ever November sweeps. Variety website. Accessed on May 29, 2007.
  56. Rosie's stormy stay on 'The View' will end. MSNBC website. Accessed on May 29, 2007.
  57. Stanley, Alessandra (2007-04-27). "The Drama of Daytime: Friendships, Feuds and Fury: Regis Philbin is back. Rosie O'Donnell is leaving.". New York Times. Retrieved 2008-06-21. 
  58. 58.0 58.1 Martin, Ed (2007-03-29). "Rosie O'Donnell Says Viewers Should Look Outside the U.S. for Their News: In Her Latest Debate on The View, Rosie O'Donnell Comes Down on American Media Companies". Media Village. Retrieved 2008-06-21. [dead link]
  59. 59.0 59.1 Rosie Responds to 'Most Annoying' Title – AOL News
  60. The Emmy Awards – Daytime Entertainment Emmy Awards – Creative Winners
  61. YouTube – The View Writers Win 2008 Emmy Award!
  62. 62.0 62.1 Chung, L.A. (16 December 2006). "'Ching-chong' joke spreads ignorance". San Jose Mercury News. Retrieved 28 August 2010. Those words once accompanied violence and lynchings. "Ching-Chong Chinaman" rhymes dating to the 19th century weren't just schoolyard taunts. To be ignorant of that, as O'Donnell was, doesn't eliminate the history. 
  63. Bonisteel, Sara (11 December 2006). "Asian Leaders Angered by Rosie O'Donnell's 'Ching Chong' Comments". Fox News. Retrieved 28 August 2010. "The View" co-host is in hot water for using the expression "ching chong" to describe Chinese people talking about Danny DeVito's drunken appearance on her show. 
  64. Astudillo, Rene M. (8 December 2006). "AAJA Responds to Rosie O'Donnell's Offensive Mimic". Asian American Journalists Association. Retrieved 28 August 2010. We feel strongly that it is our responsibility to call attention to what we consider a mockery of the Chinese language and, in effect, a perpetuation of stereotypes of Asian Americans as foreigners or second-class citizens. 
  65. Silverman, Stephen M. (14 December 2006). "Rosie Apologizes for Asian Joke on The View". People. Retrieved 28 August 2010. So apparently 'ching-chong,' unbeknownst to me, is a very offensive way to make fun, quote-unquote, or mock, Asian accents. Some people have told me it's as bad as the n-word. I was like, really? I didn't know that. 
  66. 66.0 66.1 Hua, Vanessa (15 December 2006). "O'Donnell apologizes for Chinese parody / But comedian warns she is likely to spoof languages again". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 28 August 2010. But I'm also gonna give you a fair warning that there's a good chance I'll do something like that again, probably in the next week -- not on purpose. Only 'cause it's how my brain works. 
  67. 67.0 67.1 Grossberg, Josh (2007-06-22). "Trump Wants His MTV". E! Online. Retrieved 2007-07-08. [dead link]
  68. Lauer, Matt (2007-02-03). "Confessions of a beauty queen". MSNBC. Retrieved 2007-07-08. 
  69. "Trump, O'Donnell trade blows". Herald Sun. 2006-12-23. Retrieved 2007-07-08. 
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  71. Q-Notes Online
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  73. "Out Of 'View' After A Year Of Fireworks, Rambling Rosie's Hanging Up Her Coffee Cup" Chicago Tribune, April 26, 2007, p. 40 (paid content)
  74. [1] Tokyo Rosie] Investor's Business Daily; April 2, 2007, p. A18 (opinion piece)
  75. "Statement of the Archdiocese of Boston and Boston College on sale of part of Brighton campus". The Boston Globe. 2007-04-20. Retrieved 2007-11-25. 
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  77. Gilgoff, Dan (2003-09-14). "A Settlement In Boston: The Archdiocese Agrees to a Record $85 Million. Will others follow?". US News & World Report. Retrieved 2007-11-25. 
  78. Paulson, Michael (2004-04-21). "Diocesan headquarters sold to BC: Brighton land nets $107.4m". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 2007-11-25. 
  79. Owen, Richard (2008-01-08). "Prayers To Cleanse Church of Pedophiles". The Australian. Retrieved 2007-11-25. 
  80. Scheiderer, Tim (2007-04-25). "ABC Is Proud of Anti-Christian Bigot Rosie O'Donnell, Hopes To Have Her Back as Guest Host". Media Research Center. Retrieved 2007-11-25. 
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  82. Thomson, Desson (2006-11-10). "An Unassuming Face of 'Evil'". Washington Post. 
  83. Stein, Ruthe (2006-10-27). "The bitter wake of a pedophile protected by the church". San Francisco Chronicle. 
  84. Jamie Doward, "The Pope, The Letter and the Child Sex Claim," The Guardian, April 24, 2005.
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  86. Doward, Jamie (2002-03-21). "Pope Denounces 'Evil' Sex Priests". BBC News. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  87. Abortion Ruling Sparks a Backlash for Catholic Justices: Observers Raise Questions about Justices' Catholic Faith After the Supreme Court's Upholding of Late-Term Abortion Curbs ABC News
  88. Zagano, Phyllis "Abortion debate brings anti – Catholicism into focus" The Kansas City Star April 27, 2007
  89. Reinhard, David 'How many Supreme Court judges are Catholic?' The Partial-Birth Ban and Prejudice, The Oregonian p. B06, May 3, 2007 (editorial)
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  94. Nancy, Grace (2007-05-25). "Rosie and "The View"; Stealing from a Charity Benefit". CNN. Retrieved 2008-02-04. 
  95. Olbermann, Keith (2007-05-24). "Countdown with Keith Olbermann for May 23". CNN. Retrieved 2008-02-04. 
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  98. "The Time 100". Time. 2007-05-03. Retrieved 2010-05-22. 
  99. "Rosie's "View" Review: Too Bad It's Beige". TMZ. 2007-09-05. Retrieved 2008-02-20. 
  100. Matheson, Whitney (2007-04-26). "Pop Candy: As if you don't read enough blogs ...". USA Today. Retrieved 2007-07-11. 
  101. "Barker Says O'Donnell Could Replace Him". Associated Press. 2007-06-16. Retrieved 2007-06-21. [dead link] (Page 13)
  102. "Barker: Remarks not a Rosie endorsement". Associated Press. 2007-06-20. Retrieved 2007-06-20. 

External links

  1. REDIRECT Template:IMDb name
Media offices
Preceded by
Meredith Vieira
The View moderator
Succeeded by
Whoopi Goldberg


cy:Rosie O'Donnell gv:Rosie O'Donnell it:Rosie O'Donnell he:רוזי אודונל no:Rosie O'Donnell pl:Rosie O'Donnell pt:Rosie O'Donnell simple:Rosie O'Donnell sh:Rosie O'Donnell fi:Rosie O'Donnell sv:Rosie O'Donnell