Ellen DeGeneres “never thought” her talk show would last for 19 years.
The 63-year-old television presenter began hosting her eponymously titled talk show in 2003, and it is set to come to an end in 2022 after 19 seasons – and 19 years – on air.
And Ellen has now said that while she always hoped the show would be something everyone could “enjoy”, she never expected it to have the longevity it has had for almost two decades.
While joined by ‘Access Hollywood’s Mario Lopez on the set of ‘The Ellen DeGeneres Show’, she said: "I think I gave the advice on day one. I mean, I wanted to make a show that was really fun for everybody and an escape for an hour a day. Whatever was going on in the world, I wanted this to be a happy place. I wanted everyone here to have fun working here and I wanted to not take it for granted, to enjoy [it].
"But if you would have told me that in 19 years that I would be doing this 19 years later, I never thought it would last this long.
"I thought it would do well, but, you know, talk shows don't last that long usually. So I'm, you know, beyond blessed and grateful for it going this long."
Ellen announced in May this year that her show would be coming to an end, and admitted she was planning to quit after 16 seasons.
She said at the time: "I was going to stop after season 16. That was going to be my last season, and they wanted to sign for four more years and I said I'd sign may be for one. They were saying there was no way to sign for one. 'We can't do that with the affiliates and the stations need more of a commitment.' So, we [settled] on three more years, and I knew that would be my last.
"That's been the plan all along. And everybody kept saying, even when I signed, 'You know, that's going to be 19, don't you want to just go to 20? It's a good number.' So is 19.”
The talk show host later explained to Oprah Winfrey that quitting her show was the “right thing” to do.
She added: "I didn't rehearse the monologue. I knew what I was going to say, but the words hadn't come out of my mouth. So I was okay until I started talking and it became real. Obviously, I got emotional because it's real now. But I'm feeling good.
"I feel like it's the right thing to do, but I'm charged. It's a weird thing to announce that I'm stopping."