Julie Chen was an institution on The Talk from the very beginning, and for a long time, it was difficult to imagine the daytime talk show without her on board. That changed back in September when Chen stepped down from the series following a scandal involving her husband (and former CBS head honcho), and the show has featured guest hosts ever since. Now, The Talk has named Julie Chen's official replacement, and that person is none other than Carrie Ann Inaba.

Carrie Ann Inaba is a natural choice for a permanent spot on The Talk, as she has been a guest host filling in the hole left by Julie Chen's departure. Of course, she's been only one of a number of guest hosts who could have been candidates for a permanent role, so The Talk fans may be happy to get an answer. Variety reports that Inaba closed a deal to join The Talk as an official co-host beginning in January 2019.

The Talk panel starting in January will be comprised of Eve, Sara Gilbert, Sharon Osbourne, Sheryl Underwood, and now Carrie Ann Inaba, who is no stranger to reality television. She is almost certainly best known for her role as judge on ABC's Dancing with the Stars from its very first season in 2005 through to present day. Her many guest appearances on The Talk prove that she knows how to work as a talk show co-host as well as a primetime reality judge, and they guarantee that she fits into the dynamic and chemistry of the existing co-hosts.

One way The Talk has always differed from fellow daytime talk show The View is that there is less turnover of the co-hosts. The View has cycled through an almost shocking number of women on the panel, and the latest addition was a former Fox News personality. Prior to Julie Chen's departure, there were three co-hosts on The Talk who had been present from the very first season.

Before Carrie Ann Inaba landed the gig starting in Season 2, Eve was the newest co-host, having arrived in Season 8 after the departure of Aisha Tyler. As of now, no co-host has lasted only a single season since the show's very first year on the air, when Leah Remini and two others left. If Carrie Ann Inaba follows in the footsteps of most of the previous co-hosts, she could be around on The Talk for a long time.

There's really not much risk that Julie Chen will come looking for her job on The Talk back. Although she was diplomatic when she explained her reasons for departing in a touching farewell video in September, the scandal surrounding her husband and his reported misconduct at CBS pretty much guarantees that she won't want to return full-time to The Talk. Chen did remain on board at the network in a different capacity, however. She stuck around as host of Big Brother.

You can find Carrie Ann Inaba officially on board The Talk as co-host starting on weekdays in 2019. For some primetime viewing options while many shows are on their winter hiatuses, check out our midseason TV premiere schedule.

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