Rachael's rep informed Page Six that the show is renewed through 2010, "so canceling is not an option." King World, who produces Rachael's show, has vehemently denied the story to the Huffington Post and corrected several inaccuracies.
The speculation is based on "an impeccable TV source" who told Page Six, "They are seriously talking about taking her off the air." Apparently, the issue is the show's ratings:
When she debuted two years ago, she had a meager 2.5 rating, which her syndicator, King World, nonetheless trumpeted as "The biggest syndicated debut since 'Dr. Phil.' " In fact, one insider said, "They had hoped for more. 'Dr. Phil' beats 'Oprah' and gets like a 5.0 rating - and Rachael's set is very expensive and elaborate; his is just chairs."
A rep for Ray fumed that she's not alone in her falling numbers: Oprah, who discovered the bubbly chef, was down 15 percent from February 2007 as were "Live with Regis and Kelly," "The Tyra Banks Show" and "The Martha Stewart Show."
In 2007, Ray's syndicated show averaged a 2.2 Nielsen rating and has already dipped to 2.0 this year. An insider said, "Anything below a 2.0 is asking for trouble."
Another bad indicator is that in 2007, the average age of a daytime "Rachael Ray" viewer was 53.4, with only 776,000 women between ages 18 and 49 (the show's target demo) tuning in. In 2008, both numbers have taken a turn for the worse. The average-age viewer today is 55.1, with only 688,000 women between ages 18 and 49 tuning in.
I dunno what to think about this one. It seems pretty silly to talk about not renewing her contract after 2010 when that is so far away. Plus, the anonymous source said they could pull the show off the air, which makes no sense since her contract goes through 2010. I guess we'll just have to wait two years and see! I certainly hope it's not true!
Photo from Page Six.