Steve Harvey addressed the leaked memo he sent to his talk show staff that accused them of “ambushing” him in his dressing room and banned them from entering unless invited.
Harvey confirmed the legitimacy of the memo, as well as clarified his comments in a Thursday interview with Entertainment Tonight.
The radio and TV host explained, “I could not find a way to walk from the stage to my dressing room, to sit in my makeup chair, to walk from my dressing room to the stage or to just sit and have lunch without somebody just walking in.
I’ve always had a policy where, you know, you can come and talk to me so many people are great around here, but some of them just started taking advantage of it.”
“Look man, I’m in my makeup chair, they walk in the room. I’m having lunch, they walk in, they don’t knock. I’m in the hallway, I’m getting ambushed by people with friends that come to the show and having me sign this and do this. I just said, ‘Wait a minute.’ And in hindsight, I probably should’ve handled it a little bit differently.”
Harvey went on to explain that he sent out the memo in an attempt to ask everyone “to simply honor and respect” his privacy.
He said, “If you come out your house, you don’t want anybody on your porch waiting on you. You walk to your car, you don’t want people bothering you on your way to your car. Everybody wants the freedom to be able to move around.”
“I just didn’t want to be in this prison anymore where I had to be in this little room, scared to go out and take a breath of fresh air without somebody approaching me, so I wrote the letter. I don’t apologize about the letter, but it’s kind of crazy what people who took this thing and ran, man. I appreciate you asking me.”
The original memo was reportedly sent to Steve Harvey staff at the beginning of the current season of the nationally syndicated talk show, which has long filmed in Chicago.
Starting this fall, the revamped talk show will tape in Los Angeles at Harvey’s request with a new crew.