On January 30, 2008, it was announced that The Montel Williams Show would stop production on new episodes at the end of the 2007–2008 television season after seventeen years. A rerun package offered by Montel's distributor, CBS Television Distribution, was sold into syndication for the 2008–2009 season, and reruns also aired on Black Entertainment Television (BET).
In its early years, Montel was similar to most tabloid talk shows. As time went on, however, the genre became less popular, and so toward the end of the show's run, Montel usually focused on inspirational stories and less controversial subjects. Common themes seen on Montel include finding lost loves, reuniting mothers who gave their children up for adoption, or stories of strong women who faced certain danger (such as rape or attempted murder) and fought their way out.Multiple sclerosis was also a frequent topic, as Williams suffers from the disease.
On January 26, 2008, during an appearance on Fox & Friends, Montel criticized the media's lack of coverage of the Iraq War and took the hosts (and the media in general) to task for their excessive coverage of the recent death of actor Heath Ledger, contrasting it with their sparse coverage of the U.S. soldiers dying in Iraq. This would be the catalyst for CBS Television Distribution's cancellation of The Montel Williams Show after his appearance on the program.
It was reported in Variety that CBS TV Distribution terminated the show when key Fox-owned stations chose not to renew it for the 2008–2009 season. The final episode aired in most markets on May 16, 2008, with some markets airing it at a later date (one week later).
In June 2008, Ofcom of the UK ruled that ITV2 (which aired the show during its run) "breached standards with a repeat of the Montel Williams Show in which a 'desperate' couple were told by self-professed psychic Sylvia Browne that their missing son, Shawn Hornbeck was dead - even though he turned up alive the previous year." The ruling concerned "breaching rule 2.1 of the Broadcasting Code, which relates to protecting viewers against offensive material."