Donald Trump Wanted Ivanka to Succeed Him as Apprentice Host — With Don Jr. and Eric as Advisers

Donald Trump’s pick to succeed him as host of The Apprentice, when he and the NBC reality show (ahem) “parted ways” in 2015, was daughter Ivanka.

NBC, though, waved off the reco and instead enlisted a Terminator.

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In August 2015, then-NBC entertainment chief Bob Greenblatt famously announced that The Apprentice would not be back that fall, though it would eventually return — with a new host. NBC had fired Trump after he made derogatory statements about Mexican immigrants while launching his campaign for the 2016 presidential election. (Trump weeks later countered, “I cut ties with [NBC] out of respect.”)

With an eye on that looming break-up, Trump told NBC, “‘The best person to hire would be Ivanka Trump,'” the former POTUS/current GOP frontrunner for this November’s presidential election shares in an excerpt from Apprentice in Wonderland: How Donald Trump and Mark Burnett Took America Through the Looking Glass, written by sister site Variety’s co-editor-in-chief Ramin Setoodeh (author of Ladies Who Punch: The Explosive Inside Story of The View).

“I didn’t press it,” Trump continued. “But I felt Ivanka would have been by far the best person you could hire.”

Ivanka Trump had occasional subbed as a boardroom adviser during The Apprentice‘s heyday.

Apprentice in Wonderland also reveals that any Ivanka-hosted continuation of The Apprentice would have in turn swapped in siblings Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump as boardroom advisers.

“NBC didn’t like it, because it became like a family thing,” Trump said of him pitching his daughter as host. “But I said, ‘There’s nobody you’re going to hire that will come even close to Ivanka.’ They said, ‘Huh…’ And then they came back with Arnold Schwarzenegger.”

That Schwarzenegger-hosted The New Celebrity Apprentice debuted in January 2017, and after it delivered anemic ratings, NBC put the once-popular but already-fading franchise “on the shelf.”

If you didn’t know then what you know now, would you have watched an Ivanka-hosted Apprentice?

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