Maria Menounos Opens Up About Replacing Giuliana Rancic: “I Was Assured” I Wasn’t Taking Somebody’s Job

Maria Menounos

On the record. Maria Menounos opened up to Redbook in its October 2015 issue about recently replacing Giuliana Rancic on E! News, and what exactly went down behind the scenes.

“When I was being sought after by E!, I made it very clear to them that I didn’t want to be coming over to take somebody’s job,” Menounos, 37, recalled. “And I was assured that wasn’t the case.”

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In July, NBCUniversal announced that Menounos was replacing Rancic, 41, as co-anchor of E! News. It was subsequently reported by other outlets that the two TV personalities were embroiled in a feud over how the departure went down. Rancic still remains at E! as a co-host of Fashion Police.

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Michael Loccisano/NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment/NBCU

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According to Menounos, she had only the best intentions. “That’s always been important to me,” she said of accepting job offers with dignity. “I remember years ago, I was asked to replace someone with a sick child. I was young and it would have been a huge job for me, but I told them I couldn’t take it. I have a pretty strict code with these kinds of things. If a guy beats another guy out for job, it’s like, Hey, congratulations. With women, it’s a different story.”

Having found her footing in her career, Menounos reflected on some of the recent ups and downs in her life.

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“The last two years were very challenging for me, both professionally and personally. I just felt kind of lost and I didn’t know how to handle it,” she shared. “I grew up always worried about what everyone was going to think of me. But the thing is, I’m not perfect — no one is. But I’ve learned that I have to be accepting of myself… I do have a problem where I think I always have to be working and achieving something — I’m really trying to work on it. You will never catch me sitting by the pool or watching TV by myself. It’s hard for me to shut down.”

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Alexei Hay/Redbook

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Menounos agreed with fellow October 2015 cover star Gabrielle Union that sometimes women — especially those who are career-oriented — can’t have it all. “Women have been sold a bill of goods. My biggest struggle is the idea of having kids,” she shared. “Sometimes I feel like I’m drowning with everything that’s going on in my life and there aren’t even kids in my equation yet. On my reality show last year, I was talking about freezing my eggs. I started the process, but I wasn’t successful, and it’s still not happening. So let’s call it what it is — not a good situation.”

Pick up Redbook’s anti-aging issue, featuring Menounos, Union, and Erin Andrews, on stands now.

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