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Ellen DeGeneres Sarcastically Addresses 'Great' Summer Of 'Toxic' Workplace Allegations In Season 18 Premiere -- WATCH!

ellen degeneres addresses allegations in season 18 opener

Ellen DeGeneres is feeling more “committed” to her job than ever as she kicks off season 18 of her show!

The longtime daytime TV host returned to her stage in Burbank, California after time away due to the coronavirus pandemic and a summer full of “toxic” workplace allegations. In a pre-filmed opening monologue that went live on Monday, the 62-year-old addressed these claims, which she has taken “very seriously,” to her virtual audience.

Related: Mariah Carey Recalls ‘Extremely Uncomfortable’ Interview With Ellen DeGeneres

She started the show off pretty sarcastically, recognizing she may have as many haters as she does fans:

“If you’re watching, because you love me, thank you. If you’re watching it because you don’t love me, welcome. How was everybody’s summer? Good. Yeah, mine was great. Terrific. I’m so happy to be back in the studio. There are a lot of things I want to talk about. I’ve been looking forward to addressing it all directly and unfortunately talking directly to people has been illegal for six months.”

The comedian then quickly got into the multiple accusations levied against her show, as well as the subsequent investigation by WarnerMedia:

“And then there was an investigation. I learned that things happened here that never should have happened. I take that very seriously. And I want to say, I am so sorry to the people who were affected. I know that I’m in a position of privilege and power. I realized that with that comes responsibility and I take responsibility for what happens at my show… We have had a lot of conversations over the last few weeks about the show, our workplace and what we want for the future. We have made the necessary changes. And today we are starting a new chapter.”

As you’ll recall, additional claims were made about DeGeneres herself, with everyone from former employees to restaurant servers weighing in with their less than stellar experiences:

“I’ve played a straight woman in movies. So I’m a pretty good actress. I don’t think that I’m that good that I could come out here every day for 17 years and fool you. This is me. And my intention is to always be the best person I can be. And if I’ve ever let someone down, if I’ve ever hurt their feelings, I am so sorry for that. If that’s ever the case, I have let myself down and I’ve hurt myself as well, because I always try to grow as a person. I look at everything that comes into my life as an opportunity to learn.”

So, where do we go from here? Better yet, what will Ellen be doing moving forward? She didn’t exactly share a plan of action, but assured viewers that this season will be better than ever, despite all that’s going on in the world:

“My hope is that we can still be a place of happiness and joy. I still want to be the one hour a day that people can go to escape and laugh. I want to continue to help all the people that we help every day. And I’m committed to making this the best season that we have ever had.”

Watch more from Ellen (below):

Ahead of her monologue going live, a People source described their “candid” take on Ellen’s opening:

“She didn’t hold anything back. It was poignant and funny and very much a candid take on what happened over the summer. She understands her audience wants to hear from her and is looking forward to talking directly to them on Monday.”

Ahead of today’s show, the insider explained that DeGeneres has spent her time “connecting with the staff over Zoom” and “knows that it’s on her to make sure everyone feels like they’re being heard and valued.” Though there have been some internal shakeups, Ellen and her team are “happy to be back at work together,” and are “taking it one day at a time, but so far the environment on set already feels different.”

Portia de Rossi was on-set for moral support, along with a virtual audience and crew, who applauded the Finding Nemo star as she exited:

“It was an emotional moment for everyone; she thanked everyone.”

The source added (below):

“Ellen has come away from this reinvigorated and devoted to working hand-in-hand with the staff to bring joy and humor to the fans. Ellen is excited to be back on set and wants this to be the best season yet.”

Related: Sofia Vergara Is The Latest Celeb To Defend Ellen DeGeneres

While an in-studio audience will not be present due to the ongoing pandemic, celebrity guests will be on-set alongside DeGeneres. Tiffany Haddish will be the first of the season, followed by Kerry Washington, Alec Baldwin, K-pop group Super M, and Kris Jenner, who are scheduled to appear throughout the premiere week.

Also on the docket for the fall are interviewees Kristen Bell, Jason Sudeikis, Ken Jeong, The Social Dilemma‘s Tristan Harris, Blake Shelton, Chris Rock, Adam Sandler, Amy Schumer, and new dad to two Orlando Bloom. Stephen “tWitch” Boss, who previously defended Ellen, will also guest host upcoming episodes, sitting down with the likes of Derek Hough.

Clearly she has some big names in her corner! Will U be watching as season 18 of the show today?

[Image via TheEllenShow/YouTube.]

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Sep 21, 2020 07:42am PDT