Ellen DeGeneres Reveals Return Date, Plans to Address Toxic Work Environment Drama on Air

Ellen DeGeneres is ready to talk about the past few months. Announcing the return of The Ellen DeGeneres Show Tuesday, the talk show host indicated she will address the allegations of a "toxic" workplace and subsequent investigation on air. The hit daytime series will kick off its 18th season on Monday, Sept. 21, and DeGeneres revealed she would be back on the L.A. set without a live studio audience after the coronavirus pandemic prompted her to finish the previous season at home.

The comedian said in a statement that she would be addressing the on-set drama of the last few months with her audience right away. "I can’t wait to get back to work and back to our studio," DeGeneres said Tuesday. "And, yes, we’re gonna talk about it." The upcoming season will be a star-studded one, featuring guests Tiffany Haddish, Alec Baldwin, Chrissy Teigen, Chris Rock and Orlando Bloom. DeGeneres' longtime DJ, Stephen "tWitch" Boss, will also guest host some of the upcoming episodes after being named a co-executive producer last month.

The Ellen shake-up began in July, when Buzzfeed News published a report featuring stories from former and current employees of the syndicated show who alleged they experienced racism, fear and intimidation working behind the scenes. Warner Bros. launched an internal investigation soon after and fired executive producers Kevin Leman, Ed Glavin and Jonathan Norman in August following additional allegations that were made against the trio.

DeGeneres previously apologized to her employees in a statement amid the investigation. "On day one of our show, I told everyone in our first meeting that The Ellen DeGeneres Show would be a place of happiness — no one would ever raise their voice, and everyone would be treated with respect," she wrote in a leaked internal memo in July. "Obviously, something changed, and I am disappointed to learn that this has not been the case. And for that, I am sorry. Anyone who knows me knows it’s the opposite of what I believe and what I hoped for our show."

Adding that she didn't know about the actions being taken in her name, DeGeneres prompted she was "committed" to ensuring it did not happen again. "I am so proud of the work we do and the fun and joy we all help put out in the world. I want everyone at home to love our show and I want everyone who makes it to love working on it," she concluded. "Again, I’m so sorry to anyone who didn’t have that experience."