Oprah Winfrey never approached Doug and Rob Ford about a show - Macleans.ca

Oprah Winfrey never approached Doug and Rob Ford about a show

Doug Ford said Oprah pitched a reality show to the brothers. Winfrey’s people say this isn’t true.


Toronto City Councillor Doug Ford, brother of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford

In news that will likely shock no one, the Ford brothers have been caught up in another one of their infamous battles with the truth. In November, Toronto City Councillor Doug Ford said that representatives from television production companies had inundated both his and Mayor Rob Ford’s offices, with “everyone from Oprah to Dr. Phil” pitching reality TV shows for the brothers.

“You name the person, we got calls from them,” Doug said. “There’s a massive market in the U.S.”

On Tuesday, a representative from OWN TV, Oprah Winfrey’s television network, denied that any such talks took place. “There have not been any discussions,” said Chelsea Hettrick, director of communications for OWN. The multi-platform media company is a joint venture between Discovery Communications and Harpo, Inc., which also produces the Dr. Phil show, starring psychologist Phil McGraw.

In November, Doug said he passed on Winfrey’s apparently non-existent offer, and instead announced he and his brother Rob would produce their own YouTube show, Ford Nation. The announcement came a day after Sun News cancelled the pair’s television show, and two weeks after the brothers lost their radio show on Newstalk 1010.

Spokespeople from the offices of both Doug Ford and Rob Ford have yet to respond to numerous requests from Maclean’s for comment regarding OWN’s statement.

The denial from Winfrey’s organization shouldn’t surprise those familiar with the Ford brothers. The pair have a long and complicated history with the facts, whether it’s regarding run-ins with the law, job performance, city finances or even insinuating that a member of the press is a pedophile.

Meanwhile, Toronto’s mayor does have one legitimate media gig—as a weekly football commentator on The Sports Junkies, a morning radio show airing on Washington’s WJFK-FM. During his first appearance on the show last Thursday, Rob Ford suggested that women play office football pools by picking “the cutest guy,” and “Obamacare is “going to cost [America] a fortune.”

Winfrey is surely kicking herself.


Oprah Winfrey never approached Doug and Rob Ford about a show

  1. why won’t they just go away?

    • In Doug’s case it is clear, he really wants that Ferris Wheel.

    • I say the same thing about the Ontario Liberals

      • deflection alert

    • Because it’s your job, as a voter to MAKE them go away.

      Everybody gets the government they deserve. If the government is incompetent, then the voters who elected that government are incompetent. If the government is fair, then credit belongs to the electorate for having make the right choice.

      We have only ourselves to blame. This isn’t an indictment of the Fraud Brothers. This is an indictment of Canada.

      • were Doug Ford in my ward, i would do everything in my power to vote him into the sad annals of municipal political history. sadly, both he & his halfwit brother were elected by people outside of Toronto proper who, for some reason, don’t see them as incompetent. i have yet to meet one single person who voted for Rob as Mayor in 2010 … certainly don’t think we’re getting what we deserve.

        • Doug has already done extensive polling and has come to the conclusion that he would lose if he ran again. Seems the people of Etobicoke are remembering all the lies and the fact that he spends no time in their ward.

        • Dave, as much as Rob Ford embarasses me and those willfully blind enough to have voted for him anger me, saying he was “elected by people outside of Toronto proper” is exactly the problem that causes travesties like this. None of the old municipalities wanted the 1997 amalgamation, but like it or not, the residents of Etobicoke, Scarborough and North York are every bit as much a part of the current City of Toronto as any downtowner – and they have just as much right to municipal democracy. Acting like the central areas are the “real” Toronto and the suburban areas are outsiders is exactly what perpetuates the self-destructive mentality that would cause the latter group to elect an incompetent mayor who positions himself more as an enemy of Toronto than as a visionary for it. If we want a mayor who’ll move this city forwards rather than backwards, we have to recognize that that means the whole city, even if its boundaries weren’t our choice.

          • Fantastic post. And exactly right. Treat people like outsiders, they’ll vote like outsiders.

  2. Oprah is obviously just trying to bring down the best mayor ever.

    • I really hope this is your attempt at really subtle sarcasm….

  3. Like Oprah would want to be associated with the Fords.

    • Lance Armstrong, Tom Cruise, Lindsay Lohan.. etc.
      She’s has a track record that suggests she would.

      • They said a reality show not a sit down interview.

        • And her track record still speaks volumes. She’s been allowing Dr Oz to peddle all sorts of quackery on a regular basis because that’s the kind of person she promotes.

  4. Are they completely lacking in any self-awareness that people won’t go and fact check them?


    Oh. Nevermind.

  5. Not really a surprise Ford would look to Oprah for inspiration, though, since she’s probably the greatest example of all time of someone who has gone on to have great success after admitting to having smoked crack cocaine.
    Her excuse may have actually been worse than Ford’s, too.That should be one for the blog of lists – people who have had great success despite admitting to having smoked crack. There have to be some besides Oprah and Marion Barry, right?

  6. Jeebus. Why does anyone act even the slightest bit surprised when something that either of these thug bozos say turns out to be a lie? EVERYTHING they say is a lie! Just always assume that and then from now on completely ignore them.

    All they want is attention. They’re badly behaved children. Remember that.

  7. How long until we find out, from the Fords of course, that this is all a media conspiracy to make them look bad and Oprah and her people are lying!

  8. “A long and complicated history with the facts”. “Battles with the truth”. Why do so many media outlets dance around the truth? They don’t have the courage to call a spade a spade: The Ford’s lie. Grow a pair and SAY THEY LIE.

  9. What planet does this guy live on? He’s making boastful claims about there being a “massive market” for people ridiculing them/taking pleasure in their obscenity? Why exactly are you proud of that?

    • So true, the only interest the US has in Fords is for the train wreck aspect, nothing else. And his comments on the Sports Junkies re. Obamacare clearly indicate he has no clue as to what he’s talking about, so they’d not want him as a political commentator that’s for sure.

      • He has no clue about what he’s talking (lying) about and has basically been lying since long before he was elected mayor
        nobody in the media ever challenges him on it
        until recently.

  10. Geez now Oprah is in on the media conspiracy to tarnish the Fords? I guess even a billionaire American like Oprah has an interest in keeping the gravy train running.

  11. “In news that will likely shock no one, the Ford brothers have been caught up in another one of their infamous battles with the truth.”

    Hysterical! It just never f*%^$# ends …

  12. Is it just me, or are Doug Ford’s eyes actually “black”?

    • The eyes are the mirror of the soul, apparently!

    • no eyes, just holes

  13. Meanwhile the Ontario Liberals continue to squander billions and Kathleen Wynne goes jogging.

    • Meanwhile, I just had a peanut butter sandwich.
      Meanwhile, the Leafs and Kings are tied 1-1 at the end of the second period.
      Meanwhile, in France they’re asleep now, it’s 6 time zones ahead of us.
      Oh, I’m supposed to be commenting on the topic being discussed? Sorry about that.

    • deflection alert

      • Woof woof woof – pooch alert. Put a rubber glove over your shoes.

        Oprah and Doctor Phil – Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.
        Another Ford boot delivered to the Junction Suckers&#153.

        I love these Ford guys.

        • Time for you to head back to the massage parlour for your next shift.

          Don’t you ever get tired of the Ford’s lying?

          • Oprah and Doctor Phil – Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.
            You just took a kick to the in-seam chief.

            These boys know exactly how to make fools of the NDP and it’s hillarious. You’re done Popeye, we love them.

        • oh yea!
          marmite breath is back.
          how’s that 4 cornered haircut working out.
          still making excuses for the only people slightly duller than yourself?

  14. I hope Oprah, and anyone else just stay away from these goons.

  15. What’s next for these guys? Oh, I know, that the Pope has requested an audience with both Fords to get the finer points on how to run a good city’s name into the ground.

  16. Maybe it was Jerry Springer disguising his voice?

  17. Rob Ford suggested that…“Obamacare is “going to cost [America] a fortune.”

    Oh that zany Rob Ford…what will he say ne…Oh.

    • If you like your mayor, you can keep your mayor…

  18. Is Maclean’s turning into the National Enquirer? Exactly why do you keep writing these really stupid hit pieces on the Fords? Yeah, we know you don’t like them. Yeah, it doesn’t take a brain surgeon to figure out Ford was exaggerating about Oprah and Dr Phil. I could have told you that, you didn’t need to call them.

    • He says: ”everyone from Oprah to Dr. Phil.”

      But neither of them approached him. That’s not an exaggeration. It’s a lie.

      Since when is calling out politicians on their lies a “hit piece”?

      • Since it is only the Ford sycophants posting the claims it is a “hit piece”. They are not fond of the truth when it is applied to their fearless leader.

        • The Ford abomination can’t/won’t distinguish between lies and the truth. To do so would void their belief system.

          • They tell so many lies they cannot keep track of thim. They simply have no moral compass. Thank goodness Toronto has seen them for the corrupt pair they are and has had enough.

        • Oprah and Doctor Phil – Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.
          And then Oprah calls up to say she didn’t do it. (LMAO)

          I’ve never seen the sanctimonious, tax plundering “geniuses” at the NDPee be made to look as stupid as this.

      • since you are a major fan of the politicians

    • I think the media is attempting to wake up Ford Nation, they are the only ones who can’t seem to tell that when Ford’s lips are moving, he’s lieing. He shouldn’t have agreed to a drug test, he should have agreed to a lie detector test and then get a real interviewer to ask the questions.

    • they need to be called on everything

  19. Yes, Baghdad Rob raises some serious questions. Is it really that easy to be mayor of Toronto? I mean, would a plumber or mechanic or roofer last a day if they performed like this? Ford’s like the blowhard who stands beside you drinking a coffee and pronouncing loudly on whatever comes into his fetid mind (with apologies to Zoomer Conrad) while you labour to fix your car. Is it possible the politicians are grossly overpaid? I mean, forget the Senate and the musical chairs routine current in the PM’s office, we’re talking about a guy who can’t even be bothered to show up for work and when he does he spends half the time asleep.

    • I don’t think city council should be penalized for finding ways to work around Ford and keep up everything. The city seems to do OK, it would be better with a decent mayor instead of essentially a time and attention sink where the big chair is.

      A better analogy would be someone heroically fighting cancer, and then scissorpaws here comes along and says “huh, guess cancer isn’t that bad, you look like you’re dealing with it OK.”

  20. Ford: Oprah approached me with an offer, but I said no. I have more than enough to eat at home.

    • it’s the creativity that amazes me here, people twists words, take them out of contexts and then make up a story with it all , even invent some: M. Ford never, never called that reporter a “Pedophile” but the Ford haters say he did. It’s quite a soap opera on the international level. Ka-ching, the media is laughing all the way to the bank, while people tear each others hair, LOL

    • She had a bit more crack than he could handle.

  21. Maybe this study, “Why the Unskilled Are Unaware: Further Explorations of (Absent)
    Self-Insight Among the Incompetent,” explains this circus: http://1.usa.gov/1gs4FVE

    • Thanks for the link – it explains a lot, not just about the Fords but about much of our political landscape.

  22. I’m sure there is a perfectly logical explanation for the claims about Oprah & Dr. Phil, it probably happened when they were in a druken stupor . . . and we all know the “Ford Doctrine”, it doesn’t count if it occurs when he’s in a drunken stupor.

  23. The Fords don’t “battle with the truth”. They just lie – a lot.

  24. So…

    Rob Ford is directly asked his opinion on Obamacare. Says it sucks & will cost a lot of money. Maclean’s hack uses this to…ridicule Ford?


    • I have to agree M. Ford on that one. if one does the math, and wonder how much our own healthcare costs us, well $ 200 billion / year divided by the taxpayers, (which are a fraction of the population of 33 million) equals an ENORMOUS amount for each taxpayer. By paying for each our own, everyone would be ahead,
      we would get 100% of our money, and not just the 15% or so we do now

  25. Toronto’s sore losers are so PATHETIC, they created their own problems. They are beyond NASTY! They deserve Rob Ford, and not the other way around

    • .

      • ………..

  26. Obviously Oprah is part of the conspiracy against the Fords and everything decent they represent.

  27. Why not? They are so approachable after all. Charmers, the both of them.

  28. Breaking news! Doug Ford lied again. It really should be time for the media to stop paying any attention to these two buffoons. (Although to be fair to the media, they’ll continue to run the articles as long as we keep reading them.)

  29. as both Rob and Doug aspire to hold higher public offices, right up to the PM of this country, it will prove a test of Canadian voters getting the government they deserve.

  30. Oh yeah, DoFo’s telling the truth — it just isn’t Oprah Winfrey. It’s Oprah Schwartz, who has a half-hour show on CHUB Cable138 at 3 a.m. Oh ye of little faith, how could you doubt him?

  31. Yet another example of how DoFo and RoFo are the victims here. They both suffer from the recently defined disease “affluenza”, a condition in which children — generally from richer families — have a sense of entitlement, are irresponsible, make excuses for poor behavior, and sometimes dabble in drugs and alcohol.
    We should feel sorry for them because their inability to function in society is their parents’ fault not their own.

  32. another day another round of lies from the Fords