Ellen DeGeneres (Photo: Featureflash Photo Agency)
An embattled Ellen DeGeneres has told her staff that she is an introvert and that this may result in some people thinking that she is mean.
On Monday, DeGeneres spoke to employees in a video conference addressing the allegations of sexual misconduct, racism and cruelty to staff members that have threatened to scupper her talk show.
While the allegations primarily concern senior executives, the star herself has also been accused of being mean and aloof to employees and some guests, including rumours that they are ordered not to look her in the eye.
It’s reported that Ellen denied these claims as “crazy” and said: “I don’t know where it started. Please talk to me. [It’s] not who I am.”
She admitted that she has her good and bad days and that being an introvert could be misconstrued by people. She is also said to have apologised to anyone who felt “disregarded.”
“I’m a multi-layered person, and I try to be the best person I can be and try to learn from my mistakes. I care about each and every one of you,” Ellen said.
In an earlier email to staff, the comedian said that as the show had become increasingly successful, “I’ve not been able to stay on top of everything and relied on others to do their jobs as they knew I’d want them done. Clearly, some didn’t.”
Following an investigation of the claims of a toxic work environment by Warner Bros, the company behind the show, it was also confirmed on Monday that three senior producers have been let go from the production.
These include executive producer Kevin Leman who has been accused of “rampant sexual misconduct and harassment,” which he has denied.
Ellen made TV history in 1987 when her character on her sitcom called Ellen revealed she was a lesbian. The backlash led to the show’s cancellation and the collapse of her career.
She only successfully returned to television in 2003 with The Ellen DeGeneres Show. In 2016, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Obama for being a television pioneer and “a passionate advocate for equality and fairness.”