James Corden is reportedly being lined up to replace Ellen DeGeneres on her long-running talk show.
The Ellen DeGeneres Show is currently under internal investigation by WarnerMedia following numerous accusations of workplace problems.
According to Variety, executives sent a memo to current and former staff members, advising them that a third-party firm will be conducting interviews with them about their experiences on set.
The investigation comes in the wake of accusations that the Emmy Award-winning series – which has been on the air since 2003 – has become a toxic work environment for its staffers.
During the initial coronavirus lockdown in April, Variety reported that the core stage crew heard nothing from their bosses for weeks other than to expect a significant decrease in their pay, leaving them with anxiety and uncertainty on whether they should apply for unemployment benefits.
BuzzFeedNews also released a exposé earlier this month, in which one current and 10 former employees revealed that they were subject to a culture of racism, fear and intimidation, with one stating that the host’s mantra to be kind is “bullshit” and “only happens when the cameras are on.”
Corden, who hosts The Late Late Show, is reportedly the favourite to replace DeGeneres. According to a source at the series’ network NBC, the British comedian has always been seen as her “long term successor”.
The source told The Sun: “This issue has fast tracked everything and made everyone look at the future today.
“James Corden was being eyed for Ellen’s job in the long term before any of this came to light. Now this shocking new development places a spotlight on the next step.”
Last week, it was reported that DeGeneres – who has won 30 Emmy Awards throughout her career – is contemplating quitting the series, and that she’s glad her production team is “finally having conversations about fairness and justice”.
In an email to staff, she also wrote: “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.
“Obviously, something changed, and I am disappointed to learn that this has not been the case. We all have to be more mindful about the way our words and actions affect others.”