A couple of days ago, probably in something of a perverse attempt to save her show from being canned, Megyn Kelly decided to go back to her bread and butter: racism. On Tuesday, she argued that blackface Halloween outfits weren’t racist because … who the f*** knows? This is the same woman that made a big deal about Jesus and Santa Claus being white. After the blackface comments, Kelly spent Wednesday making a public apology, followed by reports that NBC News Chief Andrew Lack “condemned” Kelly’s remarks in a town hall with staff. Last night, reports were that Kelly had fired her manager after the kerfuffle—the business equivalent of firing the hitting coach in baseball—and now it’s been reported that Kelly herself is persona non grata at NBC.
Kelly still is scheduled to be part of NBC News’ midterm election night coverage in two weeks.
“She’s lawyered up, multi-year contract,” an unnamed source told the Post. “It’s complicated. Now is as good of time as any to get rid of her.”
Whether or not Kelly will continue to work at NBC in some smaller capacity, as a soft exit, remains to be seen. The Hollywood Reporter reports that her show is not taping the rest of the week, and that her lawyer will meet with NBC executives for what sounds like a contract conversation, scheduled for this Friday.
Kelly was not on her 9 a.m. Today hour on Thursday and is not expected to be there on Friday either. It’s increasingly unlikely that she could make a return to NBC News. Freedman was hired late on Wednesday at the suggestion of UTA, say sources.
Kelly is in the middle of a three-year, $69 million contract. And while I might detest Megyn Kelly and her race-baiting personality, NBC should have never hired her and deserves, at the very least, the financial hit it is taking.
“Megyn Kelly Today” has been a work in progress. At times, it has garnered good notice for Kelly’s willingness to examine tough issues and the #MeToo social-justice movement. She did not shy away from a discussion about the late-2017 ouster of Matt Lauer after NBC News found allegations of sexual harassment levied at him. The anchor has denied some of the charges made against him. In other instances, however, the show has brought unwanted attention, including Kelly’s scolding of actress Jane Fonda. Media buyers said Wednesday that the program had proven to be a disappointment after NBC hyped Kelly’s arrival to its air.
That’s a nice way of saying that Megyn Kelly’s show has been a disaster and NBC has been a disaster, and both continue to be a disaster. The Hollywood Reporter implies that Kelly and her lawyer will be leveraging the threat of her being publicly thorny about this break in Friday’s talk with NBC brass.
A key part of his discussion with NBC News executives is expected to involve what Kelly views as some hypocrisy on the part of NBC — that it was OK for a sister property (Bravo) to show a woman dressed in what appeared to be blackface. Kelly and a panel of contributors were talking about Real Housewives of New York castmember Luann de Lesseps’ Diana Ross costume, which caused a stir earlier this year because de Lesseps appeared to have darkened her skin for the costume, which included a white evening gown and sky-high wig. De Lesseps apologized after the episode caused controversy when it aired last spring.
That’s how greedy people play with other greedy people.
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