Superstar comedian and host Steve Harvey recently sat down with the Hollywood Reporter to discuss his recent accomplishments and controversies. The West Virginia native divulged how he recovered from the disputes surrounding the infamous memo leak and meeting with Trump.
Harvey recalled the backlash he received after taking the meeting, revealing that the reactions took him by surprise.
“It was so vicious that it really threw me. I was being called names that I’ve never been called: Uncle Tom. A coon. A sellout. Because I went to see this man?! Which only happened because my business partner got a call from the Obama transition team, who said that the Trump transition team would like to set up a meeting,” the comedian said. “The Obama team said they thought it would be a good idea because the president is encouraging dialogue. And I have a relationship with Obama. We’re friends. So I say, ‘Ok, cool.’ Now, here’s the crazy thing: I’m supposed to be on a boat for my 60th birthday, so my wife says, ‘Steve, just take off [and skip the meeting]. You’ll meet with him some other time.’ God, I should’ve listened.”
Harvey then went on to discuss the contents of the meeting, though nearly 20 minutes of the time was spent talking about golf. At some point, Harvey redirected the conversations to the concerns of the people, including Housing and Urban Development. Although no physical changes have come of Harvey’s meeting, he revealed that he’s been working with the department and hopes to announce the first vision center before the end of the year. But, as for his relationship with Trump, the two haven’t spoken since then.
However, the meeting wasn’t the only controversy the comedian faced this year. After “one very angry guy” released a memo that the comedian wrote at the top of the year to help bring peace in between his many jobs, Harvey was once again hit with backlash. Although he doesn’t feel sorry for wanting space in between shows, he revealed that he has learned that he doesn’t know how to express himself on paper.
“I don’t know how to write,” he said. “I write like I talk. So hell, obviously that ain’t good. And I didn’t know if you put it in capital letters that meant you were hollering at people. My kids told me that after they got the memo.”
But, now after all of the controversy, the 60-year-old continues to build his empire, which currently consist of five game shows, four books, a clothing line, a foundation, syndicated radio show and his new talk show, Steve.
The new comedy-based show will focus on celebrity guest, with hopes of bringing in the likes of Jay-Z and Beyoncé. The show promises to bring “late night to daytime” television, as Harvey teeters on the line of appropriateness.
Despite the endless accomplishments, Harvey still has a ton of dreams and goals to accomplish, as he hopes to build one of the greatest media empires of all time, following the footsteps of his friend and mentor, Oprah Winfrey.