Jillian Michaels 'Biggest Loser' Departure Explained
Jillian Michaels recently revealed why she chose to leave The Biggest Loser one season after her triumphant return to the weight-loss reality TV show.
Jillian Michaels 'Loser' Exit
Michaels, 40, wants it made clear that she’s not leaving the show with the idea of seeking out a more lucrative opportunity, and that she’s appreciative of the exposure The Biggest Loser gave her. However, the differences between Michaels and the producers ultimately made her realize it would be best to part ways.
"I don't want fans to think I feel like I'm too big for the show or that I'm seeking greener pastures. I'm so grateful to the show and so sad to leave,” Michaels told People, explaining, "There were some fundamental differences [with Loser's producers] that have existed for a while."
One of the issues Michaels had with producers was the edit that they gave her, which increasingly portrayed her as a one-dimensional villain. Her loving relationships and connection she had with the contestants were left out of the program.
"In the beginning of the show it was tough love. You saw the tough, and you saw the love," said Michaels. But more recently, the episodes downplayed the love and focused solely on her harsher moments. "You saw none of the relationships, none of the bonds that I build with my clients," Michaels added.
"Millions of people have this warped negative perception of me,” Michaels continued, remembering a segment that questioned what she must be like at home with her two kids – Lukensia and Phoenix – who she raises with her longtime partner Heidi Rhoades. It got even worse for the celebrity trainer when the portrayal of her on the NBC directly affected her four-year-old daughter.
“‘I know who your mom is – she's a cheater,’” a schoolmate told Lukensia, referring to the caffeine pill incident that Michaels still stands behind. “‘I saw it on TV.’”
The incident with her daughter, as well as others, including the dramatic weight-loss of Season 14 winner Rachel Frederickson, forced Michaels to reevaluate her place on The Biggest Loser.
"I had to take a hard look at my work," Michaels said. "I came to the conclusion that moving forward, I need to be able to have an impact on the outcome of what I do.”
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