Sad news, today: Inside the Actors Studio, as audiences have known it for 24 years, is no longer. On Monday, Ovation TV announced that it will begin broadcasting the long-running interview series in the fall of 2019. But when the series—which formerly aired on Bravo—debuts on its new home, it will be without James Lipton, Inside the Actors Studios inimitable host and executive producer.
“Its very gratifying to see the legacy of Inside the Actors Studio being carried forward for a new generation to appreciate and enjoy,” Lipton said Monday in a statement confirming his retirement from the program. “I made a vow early on that we would not deal in gossip—only in craft, and Ovation, as a network dedicated to the arts, will continue that tradition with the next seasons of the series. Im excited to see the new hosts engage with the guests and students and continue to entertain viewers in the U.S. and around the world.”
The series will carry on with a rotating roster of celebrity hosts before Ovation settles on an official successor.
During Liptons tenure at the helm of the 19-time Emmy-nominated show, the actor-turned-host has interviewed the likes of Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Barbra Streisand, Jim Carrey, Viola Davis, and Bradley Cooper—the last of whom marked a full-circle career moment. Cooper had initially appeared on the series as a student in the audience. And in 2014, Cooper became the first graduate of the Actors Studio Drama School to be invited on the show.
Lipton said of the reunion, “We looked at each other and burst into tears. . . . What Ive waited for is that one of my graduated students has achieved so much that he walks out and sits down on that chair next to me.” Speaking about the meeting, Lipton said, “It was one of the greatest nights of my life.”
Though Lipton wont be hosting Ovations version of the show, the networks executive V.P. of programming, Scott Woodward, left open the possibility of Lipton being involved in the shows production in some other capacity.
“James Liptons future involvement will be determined based on his availability,” Woodward told The Hollywood Reporter. “But wed love to have him involved.”
Get Vanity Fairs HWD NewsletterSign up for essential industry and award news from Hollywood.Julie MillerJulie Miller is a Senior Hollywood writer for Vanity Fairs website.