The producers behind the upcoming Fox News expose Bombshell are revealing that they spoke to 20 individuals who have connections to Fox News before starting work on the upcoming film.
‘We have all taken an oath to protect our sources,’ star and producer Charlize Theron told The Hollywood Reporter.
‘But we tried to communicate as much as we could with everybody. Yeah, I’ll just say that.’
Theron, who plays Megyn Kelly, did not get a chance to speak with Kelly however according to the latter’s rep, while Gretchen Carlson was prohibited from speaking due to the terms of her $20 million settlement with Fox News and former CEO Roger Ailes.
That non-disclosure agreement did not stop Juliet Huddy however, who shared her story with screenwriter Charles Randolph.
That could cost the former anchor – who reportedly received a six-figure exit package after alleging she was sexually harassed by Bill O’Reilly – a $500,000 penalty.
‘I lost my house. My television career combusted, and I couldn’t get a job for over a year,’ Huddy told The Hollywood Reporter.
‘So come after me. I don’t have anything.’
Huddy later disputed speaking to Randolph prior to filming and said that they met after the movie was shot and that she had no hand in the production.
Carlson, who is portrayed by Nicole Kidman, says that she was upset by the fact that she was not able to tell her story to producers while they were developing the film.
‘It’s really frustrating that because of my NDA, I can’t participate in any of these projects,’ notes Carlson.
‘It’s why I’m working so hard on the Hill to change that.’
And despite the fact that the trailer is filled with scenes that seem to have been taken straight from Kelly’s memoir Settle For More, she did not speak with producers and pocketed nothing from the project.
‘Megyn has never met or spoken to Charlize, and she did not sell the rights to the book [Settle For More],’ says her attorney Bryan Freedman.
‘In fact, Megyn was as surprised as anyone when the trailer dropped.’
Huddy told The Hollywood Reporter that she was not offered much control of how she was portrayed in the film, noting she learned about one scene after it had been shot.
‘I thought, “Well, God, he’s contacted me kind of late to get my perspective,”‘ recalls Huddy.
‘I really do hope that they did their due diligence. I hope that they kept in mind the fact that while Gretchen and Megyn were turned into heroines, there were quite a few of us whose lives were turned upside down.’
This is not the first time that Huddy has spoken publicly, having previously shared her story with Kelly back in 2017 on Today.
Less than an hour later, her brother John was fired by Fox News ‘following a thorough investigation into a physical altercation earlier this month’.
The network said that the timing was a coincidence and that they were prepared to make the announcement Friday, but did not in observation of the Sabbath.
There was no explanation however as to why Huddy, who was stationed in Jerusalem, was fired at the end of the day and not first thing in the morning.
She did not go into any specific details at that time however, citing her NDA as the reason for her silence on certain topics.
Kelly however stepped in to offer up some comments of her own.
‘At Fox News, the media relations chief Irena Briganti is known for her vindictiveness. To this day, she pushes negative articles on certain Ailes accuser, like the one you’re looking at now,’ the NBC anchor began as she welcomed Huddy onto her show.
‘It gives me no pleasure to report such news about my former employer which has absolutely made some reforms since all of this went down. But this must stop. The abuse of women, the shaming of them, the threatening, the retaliation. The silencing of them after-the-fact. It has to stop.’
Kelly also used the show as an opportunity to speak about her own experiences with sexual harassment at Fox, where she worked for more than a decade before coming to Fox News.
‘Fox News was not exactly a friendly environment for harassment victims who wanted to report, in my experience,’ Kelly said.
‘However, O’Reilly’s suggestion that no one complained about his behavior is false. I know because I complained.’
Fox News’ now defunct parent company 21st Century Fox said at the time: ‘Irena is a valued colleague and she has our full support.’
Fox News also responded in a lengthy statement.
‘Since the 2016 departure of Roger Ailes, Fox News has worked tirelessly to completely change the company culture,’ noted a spokesperson.
‘Over the past three years, we have created an entirely new reporting structure, more than tripled the size of our HR footprint, instituted mandatory in-person sexual harassment training, started quarterly company meetings and mentoring events as well as implemented a zero tolerance policy regarding workplace misconduct for which we engage outside independent firms to handle investigations.
‘No other company has implemented such a comprehensive and continuous overhaul. We are incredibly proud of our team and will continue to emphasize transparency across all Fox News Media.’