OAN’s James Meyers
6:32 PM – Thursday, September 7, 2023
Late night talk show host Jimmy Fallon apologized to Tonight Show employees on Thursday, regarding a recent Rolling Stone report about Fallon creating a “toxic work environment.”
“It’s embarrassing and I feel so bad. Sorry if I embarrassed you and your family and friends,” Fallon said during a Zoom meeting with The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon employees, Variety has learned. “I feel so bad I can’t even tell you.” He told the staff during the meeting, which was said to be quick, “I want this show to be fun, it should be inclusive for everybody, it should be funny, it should be the best show, the best people.”
The report claimed two current and 14 former employees said the show’s working environment has been “far outside the boundaries” of what people consider high-pressure situations.
“It’s a bummer because it was my dream job,” one former employee said. “Writing for late night is a lot of people’s dream jobs, and they’re coming into this, and it becomes a nightmare very quickly. It’s sad that it’s like that, especially knowing that it doesn’t have to be that way.”
Additionally, other anonymous sources claimed the toxic environment behind-the-scenes began at the top, with Fallon showing constantly changing behavior, resulting in multiple changes in the show’s leadership teams.
They claimed they were “belittled and intimidated” by their bosses, including Fallon.
Employees claimed one particular day in 2017, Fallon stumbled through rehearsal and believed he was drunk when he forgot to cross out jokes on a sheet of paper.
However, despite multiple employees speaking up about their concerns, problems allegedly continued.
Multiple employees claimed they had “nightmares” about work and were in a “constant state of fear.”
“Mentally, I was in the lowest place of my life,” a former employee said. “I didn’t want to live anymore. I thought about taking my own life all the time. I knew deep down I would never actually do it, but in my head, I’m like, ‘Why do I think about this all the time?”
However, according to the New York Post the show’s behavior changed since the past year-and-a-half since new showrunner Chris Miller joined.
“There’s a new wave that came in a year and a half ago and has just made everything change,” a producer told the Post.
Rolling Stone reportedly contacted over 50 Tonight Show employees and over 30 former staffers.
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