Ellen DeGeneres's bombshell 2013 interview resurfaces and it could make her toxic workplace apology look hollow
The host has been facing backlash for quite some time after reports alleging workplace problems came out, but her apology for the same was not taken too well
Popular chat show host Ellen DeGeneres’ problems seem to just keep piling on. On July 30, amid the various allegations of workplace harassment, DeGeneres issued an apology to her staffers. In the letter, she said that she takes responsibility for her eponymous show and that steps are being taken to "correct the issues".
However, the internet is not a kind place and it surely never forgets the past. While her apology was being talked about, an old 2013 interview of the host emerged. As reported by The Daily Mail, seven years ago during an interview to an Australian channel, DeGeneres joked about not wanting to pay her staff. The report claims that the 62-year-old told Today show entertainment reporter Richard Wilkins that she wanted "everybody to work really, really hard... but not too hard that I have to pay them overtime". This was a reply to Wilkins’ question about how hard do they work to make the hit show.
DeGeneres further explained, "I mean, I draw the line at like, 'Okay, go home. That's good... good enough!' So, you know, we all work very hard because we're really proud of what we do." Later in the interview, when Wilkins asked if she was willing to change anything about her show. Her quick answer was, "Um, no, because if I wanted to change I would. I can do anything I want. I'm Ellen."
These revelations came after Today's former executive producer Neil Breen said that in 2013 during that interview he was asked not to look at or speak with DeGeneres, according to the report. He further claimed that only her staff was allowed to interact with DeGeneres and mostly "walked on eggshells". Breen revealed that everything was dictated by DeGeneres’ team — from how the interview will work to even seating arrangements. He even termed these incidents "bizarre".
The report also states Breen told 4BC, the radio station where he is now a host, that DeGeneres was initially supposed to co-host the Today show during her tour of Australia, but the plan was changed and watered down by her team. Eventually, it was agreed that Ellen would do a sit-down interview with Wilkins in Melbourne, meaning production had to be moved there from Sydney at the show's expense, Breen said.
According to Variety, DeGeneres wrote in her apology, "As we’ve grown exponentially, I’ve not been able to stay on top of everything and relied on others to do their jobs as they knew I’d want them done. Clearly some didn’t. That will now change and I’m committed to ensuring this does not happen again." As reported by MEA WorldWide, her show was the subject of an internal investigation by WarnerMedia following numerous accounts of workplace problems. As per Variety, insiders familiar with the series said executive producer Ed Glavin is set to exit his role.
Social media was abuzz with reactions right after the apology surfaced. "lmaooooo called this s**t two days ago with my friend we said verbatim she’s gonna apologize and cry and an EP will get thrown under the bus and resign," mocked a user.
lmaooooo called this shit two days ago with my friend we said verbatim she’s gonna apologize and cry and an EP will get thrown under the bus and resign https://t.co/YrKDOtOd6n— danielle weisberg (@danielleweisber) July 30, 2020
One said, "Wasn’t even an apology! She shifted the blame entirely and threw her staff under the bus when it was Ellen they were complaining about."
wasn’t even an apology! she shifted the blame entirely and threw her staff under the bus when it was ellen they were complaining about pic.twitter.com/LJF8oO9sYU— H J (@handazarus) July 30, 2020
Another angry user said, "Ellen really had to make an apology to her staff after Warner Media investigated how she treats her staff. We been knew she was trash.”
Ellen really had to make an apology to her staff after Warner Media investigated how she treats her staff. we been knew she was trash pic.twitter.com/BYBDTxBsby— Dustin Dailey (@ThreeDailey) July 30, 2020