LOS ANGELES Television host Joy Behar is leaving ABC's talk show "The View" after more than 16 years, the network said on Thursday.
Behar, 70, who has been with the daytime show since its inception in 1997, hosts the show alongside Barbara Walters, Whoopi Goldberg, Sherri Shepherd and Elisabeth Hasselbeck.
"Joy Behar has been instrumental in the success of 'The View' from the very beginning. We wish her all the best in this next chapter, and are thrilled that we have her for the remainder of the season," ABC said in a statement.
She will leave the show when the current season ends in August.
Behar told Deadline.com in an interview on Thursday that "it seemed like the right time" to leave the long-running show, saying she wanted to focus on other projects, including writing a play and returning to stand-up comedy.
The veteran personality is also the host of a daily talk show on Current TV, "Joy Behar: Say Anything!"
ABC is a division of the Walt Disney Co.
(Reporting By Piya Sinha-Roy; Editing by Stacey Joyce)