Megyn Kelly and NBC News executives are negotiating the terms of her departure from the news division, CNN reported. Although her exit is not official yet, it’s highly likely to be announced in the days ahead, according to sources with knowledge of the matter.
There had been speculation that she would remain with the network in a lesser role — but the sources told CNN that’s not happening. Earlier on Thursday, when multiple news outlets reported that Kelly is leaving NBC altogether, Kelly’s spokesman Davidson Goldin responded by saying that NBC has not been in touch with Kelly or her representatives.
NBC hired Kelly away from Fox News with great fanfare in January 2017. She was promised two shows, a weekday morning talk show and a Sunday evening newsmagazine, CNN adds.
But the newsmagazine did not last long, and the talk show didn’t meet ratings expectations. Then came this week’s controversy about her offensive comments regarding blackface Halloween costumes.
However, talks about dropping Kelly’s 9 a.m. show pre-dated Tuesday’s blackface comments, and this controversy only sealed her fate, according to two people familiar with the matter.
Numerous NBC News staffers were calling her show a “disaster” well before this latest controversy, and there have been tensions between Kelly and NBC News management for several months.
The Wall Street Journal adds that Kelly also has pulled no punches in covering stories about NBC News talent that have found themselves caught up in the #MeToo movement including former “Today” anchor Matt Lauer and Tom Brokaw.
At a town hall meeting on Wednesday morning, NBC News chairman Andy Lack condemned the blackface comments, signaling that she had lost his support. Kelly did not host her show as scheduled on Thursday morning, and the network replaced her live telecast with a pre-taped episode.
“Given the circumstances, Megyn Kelly Today will be on tape the rest of the week,” an NBC News spokeswoman said Thursday morning.