UPDATED: Megyn Kelly’s two-day bad streak just got worse. Deadline hears that the NBC News host who caused such a ruckus with her on-air remarks about blackface and her ensuing apology is no longer a client of CAA and will not be repped by UTA. Kelly has hired leading Hollywood attorney Bryan Freedman as she is heading to likely settlement talks with NBC. She is not expected to be hosting her 9 AM show for the rest of the week.
The news comes as the backlash continues over her comments during Megyn Kelly Today on Tuesday about why it’s not OK for people to wear blackface as a Halloween costume. Fallout from the comments continued today as NBC News chief Andy Lack criticized Kelly during a town hall with staffers and praised the work done by his Today, Nightly News and late-night teams.
Kelly reportedly had plotted a move from CAA to UTA shortly before the controversy erupted earlier this week. She had left CAA and was close to signing with UTA but the agency now would not proceed with bringing her in as a client under the circumstances. She instead has retained an attorney in Freedman.
It also was revealed this afternoon that cast members and EPs of Netflix’s House of Cards pulled out of guesting on Megyn Kelly Today amid the controversy.
On her show Tuesday, Kelly and a panel were discussing campus attempts to discourage “inappropriate and offensive costumes” during the trick-or-treat season when Kelly asked: “What is racist? … You do get in trouble if you are a white person who puts on blackface for Halloween, or a black person who puts on whiteface for Halloween.”
The outcry on social media was swift, and Kelly was forced to apologize later in the day. In a note to colleagues, she wrote: “Today is one of those days where listening carefully to other points of view, including from friends and colleagues, is leading me to rethink my own views.” Kelly added that she “now” realizes that it is “indeed wrong” and that “the history of blackface in our culture is abhorrent, the wounds too deep.”