The Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon has reportedly apologized to staff after being outed in a bombshell report by Rolling Stone that accused the late-night talk show host of creating a toxic work environment.
“I’m sorry if I embarrassed you. I never set out to create that type of atmosphere at the show. I think sometimes I’m working with the best of the best, you guys are the top of the game. There are things I’ve done in the past that are embarrassing but I never mistreated anybody,” he told staff on a Zoom call on Thursday evening, according to someone on the call.
“I want this show to be fun, it should be inclusive for everybody, it should be funny, it should be the best show, the best people. I just wanted to… say I miss you guys.”
In the expose released Thursday morning, Rolling Stone said it spoke to 16 former and current staffers who claimed that Fallon’s “erratic” behavior created a negative work environment, with some even claiming their mental health had been impacted by working on The Tonight Show.
Aside from outlining instances of erratic behavior and emotional “outbursts” attributed to Fallon himself, the report also points fingers at various showrunners for perpetuating the hostile atmosphere surrounding the host. This comprehensive report delves into a multitude of concerning details. Among them are descriptions of the tense environment behind the scenes, where Fallon’s mood is often described as fluctuating between “good Jimmy days” and “bad Jimmy days,” with some expressing concerns about his potential intoxication while on set. Many claim that this unpredictable atmosphere has taken a toll on their mental well-being, to the extent that some staff members reportedly referred to certain dressing rooms as “crying rooms,” where they sought refuge to release the pent-up stress and anxiety.
NBC also reacted to the report in a statement Thursday.
“We are incredibly proud of The Tonight Show, and providing a respectful working environment is a top priority,” a network spokesperson said in a statement. “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.”