While The Tonight Show is known for its humor, behind the scenes, a much grimmer picture emerges. According to a Rolling Stone report published on September 7, sixteen current and former staff members, who have chosen to remain anonymous, have leveled accusations against the late-night show, citing a toxic work culture. Allegedly, the roots of this issue trace back to the show’s leadership. Insiders have reported a stark division between “good Jimmy days” and “bad Jimmy days,” referring to host Jimmy Fallon’s tendency to have outbursts and display erratic behavior. One former employee disclosed, “It was like, if Jimmy is in a bad mood, everyone’s day is messed up. People wouldn’t joke around in the office, and they wouldn’t engage in casual conversations. It was very much like, stay focused on your tasks because Jimmy’s in a bad mood, and any slip-up might set him off.” Some staff members have connected this behavior to Fallon’s purported overconsumption of alcohol, with some suspecting he was under the influence while at work. Eight former employees even claimed that the quality of the workday hinged on whether Fallon was nursing a hangover. On particularly bad days, he would reportedly resort to passive-aggressive comments, such as, “Are you okay? Seriously, do you need help?”
Who is Jamie Granet-Bederman?
Jamie Granet-Bederman held the position of showrunner on The Tonight Show from 2020 until March 2022. The report outlines instances involving Granet-Bederman, including inappropriate comments, like the incident where she asked a Black employee, “What is going on with your hair?” Disgruntled staff members have expressed their discontent, describing them as “the worst bosses I’ve ever had in my life.” They allege that these individuals exploit their positions of authority to intimidate and mistreat staff, and claim that the network is well aware of their conduct. “Shockingly, rather than addressing the issue, the network not only tolerates but rewards such behavior.”
Another former employee revealed that Jamie Granet-Bederman attended an exit interview conducted by the HR department after they left The Tonight Show. They described this as feeling like an intimidation tactic, and it marked a troubling pattern where employees would report issues involving Granet-Bederman to HR, only to discover that HR was subsequently sharing this information with Granet-Bederman herself. This allegedly led to these employees being placed on a “performance-improvement plan.”
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The former employee further expressed their frustration, saying, “Everything that I relayed to HR was then relayed to my manager, so it was not a safe space. It felt as if they were acting in the interest of one person instead of the interests of the greater whole.”