Ellen DeGeneres Addresses ‘Toxic Environment’ Allegations on Talk Show’s Return

by Hunter Miller
(photo credit: Anthony Harvey / Contributor / Getty Images)

The “Ellen DeGeneres Show” is back after a long hiatus for Season 18. The daytime talk show host is addressing the allegations that she runs a “toxic work environment” right out of the gate.

The 62-year-old comedian posted a clip from her opening monologue on social media on Monday morning. DeGeneres first spoke out about the reports that surfaced earlier this summer about her show. “As you may have heard this summer there were allegations of a toxic work environment at our show,” she said. “And then there was an investigation. I learned that things happened here that never should have happened.”

DeGeneres then offered an apology to her co-workers and former employees. “I take that very seriously and I want to say I am so sorry to the people who were affected,” she said. “I know that I’m in a position of privilege and power and I realize that with that comes responsibility. And I take responsibility for what happens at my show. This is the Ellen DeGeneres Show. I am Ellen DeGeneres.”

Ellen DeGeneres on Making Changes at the Workplace

Warner Bros. previously confirmed that executive producers Ed Glavin and Kevin Leman and co-executive producer Jonathan Norman left the show. DeGeneres talked about making those changes in personnel.

“We have had a lot of conversations over the last few weeks about the show, our workplace and what we want for the future,” she said. “We have made necessary changes. And today we are starting a new chapter.”

Furthermore, the Emmy winner addressed the reports that claim she is not the person she portrays herself to be on TV. “There were also articles in the press and on social media that said I am not who I appear to be on TV,” she said. “Because I became known as the ‘be kind’ lady.”

“And here’s how that happened,” she continued. “I started saying be kind to one another after a young man named Tyler Clementi took his own life after being bullied for being gay. I thought the world needed more kindness and it was a reminder that we all needed that. And I think we need it more than ever right now.”

Ellen Says She Is the Same Person Her Viewers See on TV

DeGeneres later jokingly advised people not to try and become known as the “be kind lady.”

“Being known as the ‘be kind’ lady is a tricky position to be in,” she said. “So let me give you some advice out there. If anybody is thinking of changing their title or giving yourself a nickname, do not go with the ‘be kind’ lady. Don’t do it.”

DeGeneres then dispelled the rumors while also making several honest admissions about her shortcomings. “The truth is, I am that person that you see on TV,” she said. “I am also a lot of other things. Sometimes I get said. I get mad. I get anxious. I get frustrated.”

She continues by saying: “I get impatient. And I am working on all of that. I am a work in progress. And I am especially working on the impatience thing because…it’s not going well because it’s not happening fast enough.”

DeGeneres begins the new season of her show with special guest actress-comedian Tiffany Haddish. Furthermore, the opening week features appearances by Alec Baldwin, Kerry Washington, and Chrissy Teigen.