Megyn Kelly was once talked about as the future face of NBC News — possibly as its next chief news anchor. Now, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter, she has lost her perch as host of NBC’s Today show at 9 a.m.
Negotiations between NBC and Kelly are ongoing, the person said.
“It’s clear she will not be returning to the network,” the person told NPR.
Over the past two days, Kelly has unsuccessfully sought to contain the damage from several statements she made on her hour on Today defending the desire of white people to dress up in blackface costume for Halloween.
Colleagues and people on social media reacted in outrage to her remarks, often pointing to her own past as a host on Fox News who periodically made racially charged remarks.
“What is racist?” Kelly asked Tuesday in a conversation with other panelists on her show. “Truly, you do get in trouble if you are a white person who puts on blackface for Halloween, or a black person who put on whiteface for Halloween. When I was a kid, it was OK as long as you were dressing up as, like, a character.”
The incident recalled past controversies at Fox News. In 2013, Kelly had infamously made racial claims for both Jesus Christ and Santa Claus: “For all you kids watching at home, Santa just is white,” Kelly claimed during a discussion on Fox News in 2013. “Jesus was a white man, too.”
Megyn’s Hollywood agency CAA released her as a client. The company began representing her in 2015. She’s currently being represented by entertainment lawyer Bryan Freedman.
When she joined NBC in 2017, she was given a $20 million-a-year contract. It seems the network will now pay out the remainder of the contract, totaling $69 million, according to the Daily Mail.
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