Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon reportedly apologized to his staff on Zoom after Rolling Stone published an exposé with allegations from dozens of current and former employees about the toxic workplace environment Fallon fostered.
The article accused Fallon of displaying erratic behavior, being dismissive, mean, and intoxicated on set, which created a toxic work environment that took a toll on some employees' mental health.
Rolling Stone confirmed that Fallon and Tonight Show showrunner Chris Miller addressed the show's employees during a Zoom call on Thursday evening. Two staffers who were present during the meeting shared details with the publication.
During the call, Fallon reportedly expressed remorse and offered an apology to the staff. He emphasized that he never intended to foster such a negative atmosphere within the show.
"It's embarrassing and I feel so bad. Sorry if I embarrassed you and your family and friends… I feel so bad I can’t even tell you." ...
“I want the show to be fun, [it] should be inclusive to everybody. It should be the best show.”
NBC also released the following statement after the piece went viral.
“We are incredibly proud of The Tonight Show, and providing a respectful working environment is a top priority. 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.”
But many felt Fallon's apology was too little too late.
The Rolling Stone exposé depicted a workplace environment where guests' dressing rooms sometimes served as places for staffers to cry due to the challenging conditions. Many employees reportedly felt they needed to be cautious to avoid Fallon's anger.
The publication contacted approximately 80 employees while investigating Fallon's alleged behavior. The outlet said that “while many of them praised Fallon’s immense talent and comedic gifts, not a single one agreed to speak on the record or had positive things to say about working on The Tonight Show.”