NBC already knew it was going to cost them to cut ties with controversial television host Megyn Kelly, but now we apparently know just how much it will cost them for Kelly to go away.
The woman who once derided a “black Santa” and wondered if blackface wasn’t so bad after all will take home a $30 million payday to, well, not work. Page Six reported on Tuesday that Kelly, who was removed from the air after her Halloween costume comments drew outrage across the country from anyone who, uh, understood the long history of racism associated with blackface in American entertainment.
Kelly was owed a large portion of her contract, which meant a huge payday was looming once NBC couldn’t save face and have Kelly appear on air after she claimed she didn’t see the big deal about white people wearing blackface for Halloween costumes. Now, that number has been narrowed down to about $30 million.
Sources say NBC owner Comcast will pay Kelly around $30 million. She signed a $69 million deal when she joined the network after leaving Fox News in 2017.
A source familiar with the negotiations said nothing will happen until next week at the earliest, admitting: “It’s taking slightly longer than expected, the paperwork is going back and forth.”
Another Page Six source said that NBC is eager to just square up and move on.
“Everyone wants this to be over — both Megyn and NBC — and Comcast has the money to pay off Megyn,” the souce said. “We thought this would be a done deal a few weeks ago.”
Kelly’s departure from the air seems to have led to better ratings for The Today Show, but the network truly did have big plans for what was once considered a prized acquisition when Kelly left the conservative safe haven of Fox News. NBC was apparently going to use Kelly as a focal point to its election coverage, but that never happened. And now, Kelly will enjoy a huge payday while NBC wishes hiring her also never happened.