B anking on the success of ABC’s “The View,” co-creators Barbara Walters and Bill Geddie reportedly want to bring some testosterone into the mix with a unisex spin-off of the round-table talk show. Like the original, which has been running on ABC since 1997, Walters and Geddie want to assemble five co-hosts who can gab about a wide variety of topical subjects. At the top of their wish list of host is former “Today” show host Bryant Gumbel, as the show’s moderator.
The other male whom Walters and Geddie have in mind would balance Gumbel’s reserve with a splash of flamboyance: Filipino-American comedian Alec Mapa, who played newscaster Suzuki St. Pierre on “Ugly Betty.” The women on the exec producers’ wish list: former BET news anchor Jacque Reid, who came very close to getting the spot on the original show that went to Sherri Shepherd.
The show is in the development stage, Walters and Geddie envision it being produced in L.A., instead of New York, where the original show is based. It also would be geared for the afternoon time slot that Oprah Winfrey’s talk show is expected to relinquish next year. They don’t want to do anything that will compete with “The View.”