Megyn Kelly Is 'Expecting to Leave Today Show at the End of Season in December': Source
"Megyn wants to be involved in political coverage in a deeper way than she can do at 9 a.m," a source tells PEOPLE about Kelly's future with NBC
“She is expecting to leave the Today show at the end of the season in December,” a Today show source tells PEOPLE about the future of Megyn Kelly Today.
“We began discussions earlier this month about a different role within NBC News because Megyn wants to be involved in political coverage in a deeper way than she can do at 9 a.m,” explains the station source, who noted that Kelly’s discussion occurred before the controversy surrounding her recent blackface comments.
“Megyn indicated before this brouhaha that she wanted to move on before the end of the year in order to be involved in the presidential campaign coverage,” the station source says.
However, in the wake of the blackface controversy, many at the Today show are displeased with Kelly, 47, and are questioning her future with NBC, according to a separate source. “People at the Today show are not happy with Megyn right now,” the source says, adding that “nobody knows what is going to happen with her now” in regards to changes in her position.
Late Wednesday it was also revealed that the host and her agency CAA had parted ways, the talent agency confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter.
A source tells PEOPLE that Kelly fired CAA because of conflicts of interests they had with NBC. The source also said she had been offered representation from UTA but then backed out.
A rep for Kelly at NBC News declined to PEOPLE’s request for comment. CAA did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
The former Fox News host caused controversy Tuesday morning during Today‘s third hour when she questioned whether wearing blackface as part of a Halloween costume is actually racist.
“But what is racist?” she asked Jacob Soboroff, Melissa Rivers and Jenna Bush Hager during a discussion about censoring Halloween costumes. “Because truly you do get in trouble if you are a white person who puts on blackface at Halloween or a black person who puts on white face for Halloween. Back when I was a kid, that was okay as long as you were dressing up as like a character.”
In her email, Kelly acknowledged “that such behavior is indeed wrong, and I am sorry. The history of blackface in our culture is abhorrent; the wounds too deep.” She also wrote, “Listening carefully to other points of view, including from friends and colleagues, is leading me to rethink my own views.”
She added that she’s “never been a [politically correct] kind of person — but I understand that we do need to be more sensitive in this day and age. Particularly on race and ethnicity issues which, far from being healed, have been exacerbated in our politics over the past year. This is a time for more understanding, love, sensitivity and honor, and I want to be part of that. I look forward to continuing that discussion.”
The controversy and questions about Kelly’s future at NBC come at a very busy time for Today as it is just days away from its annual Halloween special, which Kelly was no doubt taking part in for the second time.
Fellow NBC stars Al Roker and Craig Melvin denounced Kelly on-air Wednesday. During the Today show, Melvin called the blackface comments “racist and ignorant” while Roker said Kelly “owes a bigger apology to folks of color around the country.”
In addition, NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt covered Kelly’s blackface remarks on Tuesday’s episode as the show reminded viewers of a 2013 clip from Fox News in which Kelly said, “For all you kids watching at home, Santa just is white.” (The same clip aired on the Today show as well.)
The same day, Kelly tearfully addressed viewers at the top of her broadcast. “I’m Megyn Kelly and I want to begin with two words — I’m sorry,” she said.
In January 2017, NBC canceled the third hour of the Today show to make room for Megyn Kelly Today, which premiered in September 2017.