Megyn Kelly did not host her morning show on Thursday and will be on “tape” for the rest of the week, an NBC News spokesperson told TPM Thursday. And Kelly may not come back, according to new reports from CNN and Variety.
“Given the circumstances, ‘Megyn Kelly Today’ will be on tape the rest of the week,” the spokesperson told TPM.
The move comes just days after Kelly was widely criticized for claiming that the use of blackface makeup was acceptable if it was for a Halloween costume. Kelly apologized on air Tuesday and claimed she didn’t know about blackface’s racist roots until this week. But sources told CNN and Variety that the cancellation of “Megyn Kelly Today” has been a topic of discussion since before the blackface backlash.
Sources told CNN that the show — which NBC staffers reportedly called a “disaster” — will be over soon, but the end date remains unclear. Kelly, who is set to help with midterm coverage in less than two weeks, has left her talent agency and hired an attorney, according to CNN, which noted the retention of a lawyer could mean she’s gearing up for a fight over her three-year $69 million contract.
It’s unclear if the show’s cancellation signals the end of Kelly’s tenure at NBC, but a person who spoke with Kelly told Variety that she’s in talks with NBC News about taking a position in the cable news arena. Kelly previously worked at Fox for four years, most notably as the evening news anchor of “The Kelly File.”
”Where do you think Megyn Kelly would be happier, as part of big breaking news or forced to cover light-hearted stories that traditionally work at 9 a.m.?” the source who spoke to Kelly told Variety.
But Kelly has been openly critical of NBC News’ management for several months, including NBC News Chairman Andy Lack, who did not hide his disappointment with Kelly’s blackface remarks during an NBC town hall meeting with staff this week.
“There is no other way to put this but I condemn those remarks, there is no place on our air or in this workplace for them. Very unfortunate,” Lack reportedly told staff.