Don Lemon does not appear to be having a good time at the moment.
Lemon “went ballistic,” according to the entertainment news website Radar Online, after the latest in a spate of accusations detailing his unethical behavior toward his morning show co-hosts was revealed in an in-house CNN newsletter. According to Radar Online, a “well-placed insider” is cited as a source.
Lemon’s professional prospects have been deteriorating in recent weeks, as low ratings for “CNN This Morning” and complaints of improper behavior with co-hosts Kaitlan Collins and Poppy Harlow have made him a potentially disruptive member of its team.
“Tensions on the set of “CNN This Morning” have recently boiled over, with Don Lemon allegedly “screaming” at co-host Kaitlan Collins off-camera during an ugly December incident that has left the cast and crew rattled ever since…” according to the New York Post.
According to two sources with knowledge of the situation, 56-year-old Lemon approached 30-year-old Collins following the show’s Thursday, Dec. 8, broadcast — and unloaded on her in front of staffers as he accused her of “interrupting” him on air.
“Don screamed at Kaitlan, who was visibly upset and ran out of the studio,” one source with knowledge of the skirmish said.
News of the explosive incident made its way up to CNN CEO Chris Licht, who is said to have been appalled by Lemon’s behavior, according to a source. A second source said a producer talked to Lemon at the behest of Licht and told the anchor to take the next day off to “cool off.”
According to a previous Radar Online article, tensions were apparent on the broadcast, but in an imprecise and fuzzy way.
“Don went into this thinking of himself as Beyoncé and his co-hosts as his backup dancers,” said one of Radar’s informants for a January report.
“That attitude did not fly — especially with Kaitlan,” the source added. “She won’t play second fiddle to Don.”
It’s all coming together now, as Radar Online reports on the fallout from the publication of the Post’s piece last week. CNN’s internal newsletter allegedly connected to it.
“Don lost his mind internally and went ballistic at staffers after the CNN newsletter highlighted a story about him screaming,” according to the “insider” in Radar’s article last week.
“Lemon’s way of dealing with a report that his blowups were affecting his co-hosts was to … blow up at staffers. This whole getting-a-clue thing doesn’t seem to be working out for Don,” the Western Journal commented.
But then, we should have known this from the beginning. Lest we forget, here was the host last September, assuring us that his move from prime-time to a morning show was not a demotion:
CNN’s @DonLemon on being demoted from primetime to the AM: “I was not demoted” pic.twitter.com/WgatfCzPLT
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) September 16, 2022
Not only was it a demotion, it’s one that’s come with low ratings, to boot. On the week of Jan. 16-22, Lemon’s morning show was crushed by Fox News’ “Fox & Friends.” While “Fox & Friends” took an average 1.3 million viewers and 180,000 in the 25-54 demographic, “CNN This Morning” only managed 331,000 average viewers and 85,000 in demographic.
More on this story via The Republic Brief:
The night after Lemon was told to take a day off to “cool off,” a source said the co-hosts were scheduled to get drinks together and attend a White House press party. CONTINUE READING…