Oprah Winfrey: You’re going to see a lot of me on OWN

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The wait is over: After months of speculation over how much Oprah Winfrey Network viewers will see of the channel’s namesake, Winfrey plans to answer that question on Thursday.

According to a story in the Wall Street Journal, the simple answer is this: A lot.

Set to unveil OWN’s official launch slate on Thursday at Discovery Communications’ upfront presentation, Winfrey will announce that she plans to host a weekly primetime series, “Oprah’s Next Chapter.”

The show won’t be studio-based, but will instead follow Winfrey as she travels the world, interviewing celebrities and newsmakers. Show could air multiple times a week.

“I’m going to take viewers with me, going to take celebrities I want to
interview with me” around the world, Winfrey told the newspaper.

Winfrey had previously only been confirmed to host a “Master Class” series for OWN, in which she planned to spend an hour speaking to leaders in various fields.

But that’s not the end of it. As Winfrey told the Journal, she could show up in multiple series, including a new spin on her famous “Oprah’s Book Club” feature.

“My name’s going to show up on that grid a lot,” she told the paper.

Winfrey also admitted that it’s taken longer than expected to get OWN off the ground. The channel, which was first announced in 2008, has already undergone multiple management changes. And the launch date has been pushed back — it’s now set to officially take over the Discovery Health slot in January 2011.

Plans for OWN appeared to really accelerate following Winfrey’s announcement last fall that she would end her syndicated “Oprah Winfrey Show” in the third quarter of 2011.

“It has been more difficult building a team from scratch than I realized
it would be,” Winfrey told the Journal.

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