As Ellen DeGeneres finds herself in the midst of controversy following accusations that she has created a toxic workplace, Ellen DeGeneres Show staff have reportedly dubbed her "Talk Show Karen." The unfavorable "Karen" nickname, a term used to describe an entitled or demanding white woman, is allegedly being used by staffers as they discuss the current controversy.
DeGeneres' nickname was revealed by production sources. Speaking to the Daily Mail, one source poised the question, "Who would've thought that one of America's most loved personalities would morph into America's most famous Karen?" That same source said that staffers are hoping that DeGeneres is outed as host, as "there's no way anyone on staff wants Karen and her band of toxic executives to return."
Although rumors have swirled for months now that DeGeneres was perhaps not as friendly as she appears on her talk show, they came to a head in July when one current and 10 former employees of the talk show claimed there was a "toxic" work environment behind the scenes. The staffers said they faced intimidation and racism from upper management during their time at the show. In a subsequent report, other staffers alleged they faced sexual harassment and misconduct from executive producers, accusing executive producers Ed Glavin, Mary Connelly and Andy Lassner, of "bullying."
The accusations prompted WarnerMedia to officially launch an investigation. In a statement last week, WarnerBros. said that in the initial stages of the investigation, dozens of former and current employees had been interviewed and that the network was "disappointed that the primary findings of the investigation indicated some deficiencies related to the show's day-to-day management." As a result, the media company added that several "staffing changes" and other "appropriate measures" will be made to "address the issues that have been raised."
In the midst of the controversy, several reports have suggested that The Ellen DeGeneres Show is on its way out, at least in its current form, with producers reportedly searching for a replacement host. Although some sources have claimed that such rumors are unfounded, and DeGeneres has not publicly commented on the possible fate of her talk show, an insider from Telepictures, the production company behind The Ellen DeGeneres Show, said that big names like Sean Hayes, Kristen Bell, Melissa McCarthy and "the ultimate A-lister" Jennifer Aniston are currently being eyed as a replacement. The source said that "they are all genuinely warm and could carry an Ellen-less show."