Back in 1997 a new show was about to debut in August which would go on to become one of the staples of daytime TV : "The View." Now, an exclusive tape from June 26, 1997 shows the original ladies of the show rehearsing what would go on to be the program's signature daily "Hot Topics" segment.
“Before we shot our first shot, I shot this on my VHS-C palmcorder to tape the first run-through of "Hot Topics" with Barbara (Walters), Star (Jones), Meredith (Vieira) and Debbie (Matenopoulos),” says Hank Norman. “Also at the table (and not seen are) Bill Geddie and senior producer Allison Kluger.”
“Well, the hot news today is that Lady Di is now being called princess of sales as of this morning,” says Meredith on her first run-through. “She had an auction last night at Christies of her gowns. 79 of them raised $5 million. Even the catalogs, people that couldn’t buy the gowns themselves bought the catalogs.”
“I went Monday night when princess Diana herself was there,” responds Barbara Walters before one of the ladies accuses her of name-dropping. “It was a mob scene.”
As you watch, it becomes clear that Barbara and Meredith would become the center of the show, with a young Star and Debbie (who Barbara appears to yawn at) playing second fiddle.
“People have so much money that you can spend $100,000 on a dress?” asked Barbara. “I’m not exactly pleading for money but I wouldn’t spend $100,000.”
“Is someone really going to spend $85,000 on a black woman’s dress? I can't wait to live that day,” said Star.
“This is not a racial case, my dear,” Barbara jumped in.