Ellen DeGeneres, the former daytime talk show titan, recently announced that she plans to retire from the spotlight following the conclusion of her "Ellen's Last Stand...Up" tour, which will be filmed for a Netflix special. During a candid Q&A session at the Luther Burbank Center for the Arts in Santa Rosa, California, DeGeneres made it clear that her upcoming Netflix special will mark the end of her public career. "This is the last time you're going to see me. After my Netflix special, I'm done," she stated firmly.

DeGeneres, 66, has been touring with her stand-up show, addressing both her personal and professional life. She responded to one fan's inquiry about a potential return to movies or Broadway with a succinct "Um, no." Another fan's suggestion that she reprise her beloved role as Dory from Pixar's "Finding Nemo" and "Finding Dory" was met with a definitive "No, I'm going bye-bye, remember."

The tour, which continues through August 17, has also provided DeGeneres with a platform to address the controversies that surrounded the end of her long-running talk show. "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" ended amid allegations of a toxic workplace environment, including claims of racism, sexual misconduct, and intimidation. These issues led to an internal investigation by WarnerMedia and the dismissal of three producers. DeGeneres offered an on-air apology during the final season of her show.

At her Santa Rosa performance, DeGeneres humorously recounted recent events, saying, "Let me catch you up on what's been going on with me since you last saw me. I got chickens. Oh yeah, and I got kicked out of show business for being mean." She admitted that she could be "demanding and impatient and tough," but insisted, "I am many things, but I am not mean."

Reflecting on her career and the public backlash, DeGeneres acknowledged a shift in her perspective on fame. "I used to say, 'I don't care what people say about me.' Now I realize I said that during the height of my popularity," she noted, underscoring the impact of the allegations and the end of her show.

During a previous stop on her tour at the Largo at the Coronet Theater in West Hollywood, DeGeneres expressed her disappointment with how her show concluded. "I just thought, 'Well, this is not the way I wanted to end my career, but this is the way it's ending.' ... I just hated the way the show ended," she lamented. "I love that show so much and I just hated that the last time people would see me is that way."

Despite her intentions to retreat from the public eye, DeGeneres has maintained a presence through her stand-up performances, where she continues to engage with fans and address her experiences. Her Netflix special, set to air in late 2024, will be her swan song to the entertainment industry.

DeGeneres has also opened up about the challenges she faced due to her public persona clashing with behind-the-scenes reports. In an interview with Rolling Stone, she reflected on her "be kind" motto, saying, "The 'be kind' girl wasn't kind. I became this one-dimensional character who gave stuff away and danced up steps. Do you know how hard it is to dance up steps? Would a mean person dance up steps?"