Ah, remember 2015? A time when emails were just emails and no one knew who Robert Mueller was? Well, Giuliana Rancic is about to give us a taste of the good ol’ days—because she’s returning to E! News.
The TV personality confirmed the announcement on Instagram with a throwback headshot from her early days at the network. “Where it all began…so thrilled to announce my return to @enews!!!!” she wrote. “Excited to co-host with my bff @thejasonkennedy and work with the brilliant team at my home away from home & to be in your living rooms once again! You’ve always been my baby, @enews.”
Rancic first began working with the network in 2002 as a correspondent, slowly making her way to a co-host position at E! News. She left her full-time post in 2015, but continued to work as a red carpet host for awards shows as well as major events like Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding. After her departure, Catt Sadler stepped into her position.
Sadler, however, left the network abruptly in late 2017, claiming that she did so after discovering a major pay gap between her salary and that of her male co-host, Jason Kennedy.
After Sadler cried foul, Frances Berwick, president of Lifestyle Networks at NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment, said the gap between salaries was based on varying responsibilities and roles, not gender.
In a blog post, Kennedy’s wife Lauren Scruggs also responded to the drama, invoking Rancic’s name in the process to point out that she had made more money than Kennedy.
RELATED: Catt Sadler on Leaving E! After Her Pay Controversy: “It Was Very Scary to Walk Away”
In a statement published in The Hollywood Reporter, Sadler retorted, “For people to use the argument that Giuliana somehow made more than Jason, that comparison doesn’t work. They’re apples and oranges. She joined before him, she was managing editor, she had multiple shows on the network.” Sadler received an outpouring of support from actresses, including Debra Messing and Eva Longoria, both of whom called out the network for unequal pay while giving live red carpet interviews on E! News.
Though she acknowledged that walking away from E! was “very scary,” Sadler has since moved on. Currently, she’s producing a show about gender inequality alongside Jennifer Lawrence, another outspoken equal pay advocate.
One thing’s for sure—we hope Rancic took note of Sadler’s work and asked for exactly what she’s worth.
I didn’t expect that I would be an advocate in this position, sitting here today talking with you. I never could have imagined it in a million years. And it was a tumultuous time obviously to your point. I was somewhere more than a decade, that was my life, that is what I knew. But now that I’m here, in retrospect I am leaning in to the fullest. Some of it falls on us, the individual, right? So we have to ask the hard questions. We have to arm ourselves with not only the courage to stand up for ourselves and make some noise, and knock on the door and say This is my worth and this is what I want. But we have to be able to back it up with substantial tangible information that makes our argument a strong one. I tried to play catch up a little too late. I think that’s where I was hurt. Because I was in the dark for so long. I think that’s what women, it’s in our nature especially to work hard, work long. We’re juggling 1,000 things and we’re just eager to be a team player. Player, usually, and so you trust the process, I think, and I think we can’t do that anymore. I was in awe of the power of numbers, and how women organize, and the sisters get together. There’s a real Value in that, and there’s so much that can be accomplished. And I think that’s kind of what we continue to see more. That’s what excites me. Yes, it was great that Natalie Portman said I stand by Catt Sadler. I’ve idolized her since I was this big. But it’s bigger than that. It’s about the collective experience, and it just reaffirms that There are enough women that have had it. Time is up. The silence no more.