“It’s embarrassing and I feel so bad,” Fallon, 48, told personnel via Zoom on Thursday, September 7, according to Rolling Stone. “Sorry if I embarrassed you and your family and friends … I feel so bad I can’t even tell you.” The call took place just hours after the outlet published a bombshell report about Fallon’s alleged on-set behavior.
Fallon referred to showrunner Chris Miller — who was also on the call — as a “great leader” who will remain in his position.
“I want the show to be fun, [it] should be inclusive to everybody,” the comedian allegedly told employees. “It should be the best show.”
Fallon’s Zoom with staff came just hours after Rolling Stone published their investigation into 16 employees’ claims about the environment on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. Of the 16 workers Rolling Stone interviewed, 14 were former employees and two are current staffers.
According to former employees, staffers would frequently joke about “wanting to kill themselves” because of the allegedly toxic environment. Dressing rooms were referred to as “crying rooms” by staff needing a reprieve to let out their emotions.
Moreover, multiple people claimed that Fallon’s allegedly erratic behavior caused much contention in the workplace.
“Nobody told Jimmy, ‘No.’ … You never knew which Jimmy we were going to get and when he was going to throw a hissy fit,” one former employee said. “Look how many showrunners went so quickly. We know they didn’t last long.” Another alleged: “It was like, if Jimmy is in a bad mood, everyone’s day is f—ked.” A third former employee voiced their disappointment at Fallon’s alleged behavior. “Sometimes we would get nice Jimmy, but that sometimes was not a lot. It was just really, really sad to me that this really talented man created such a horrible environment for the people there,” the staffer noted.
NBC released a statement in response to the allegations on Thursday, though Fallon’s name was not specifically mentioned.
“We are incredibly proud of The Tonight Show, and providing a respectful working environment is a top priority,” a spokesperson for the network told Rolling Stone. “As in any workplace, we have had employees raise issues; those have been investigated and action has been taken where appropriate. As is always the case, we encourage employees who feel they have experienced or observed behavior inconsistent with our policies to report their concerns so that we may address them accordingly.”
Us Weekly has reached out to Fallon’s rep for comment.