A sexual misconduct scandal at “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” continues to grow as dozens of ex-staffers air their complaints about head writer and executive producer Kevin Leman.
Warner Bros. declined to comment on specifics of a BuzzFeed exposé detailing requests for sexual favors and lewd remarks aimed everyone from “senior-level honchos to lowly production assistants.”
“It’s masked in sarcasm, but it’s not sarcasm,” a former staffer told the websites of questions like, “Are you a top or a bottom?”
“The Ellen DeGeneres Show is, and has always strived to be, a place that brings positivity to the world,” Warner Bros. said in a statement released Thursday. “And though not all of the allegations were corroborated, we are disappointed that the primary findings of [our] investigation indicated some deficiencies related to the show’s day-to-day management.”
Ms. DeGeneres released a statement to staff asserting her commitment “to ensuring this does not happen again,” while Mr. Leman categorically denied any wrongdoing.
“I have always aimed to treat everyone on the staff with kindness, inclusivity and respect,” the producer wrote. “In my whole time on the show, to my knowledge, I’ve never had a single HR or inter-personal complaint made about me, and I am devastated beyond belief that this kind of malicious and misleading article could be published.”
BuzzFeed noted that it spoke to a total of 47 former employees for its piece.
Similar accusations were leveled against producer Ed Glavin, who did not respond to BuzzFeed’s request for comment prior to publication.
“You could definitely see the creep factor and the creepy touching,” an ex-employee said. “That was out in the open for everybody to see. Obviously, no one wants that and no one wants to be uncomfortably touched by someone … but you didn’t want to piss them off or you would be fired, so it was just that culture of fear.”
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