Australian entertainment reporter Richard Wilkins has opened up about his experiences visiting the set of The Ellen Show, and his interviews with talk show host, Ellen DeGeneres.
While he credits Ellen with being “professional”, he does drop some juicy information about the set, and it certainly doesn’t seem to be as happy and joyous as it’s made out to be on TV.
“It was the coldest studio I’ve ever been in — figuratively and literally,” Wilkins says. “It wasn’t just the temperature, which was freezing. I couldn’t work out whether it was to counteract the heat generated by the huge screens with the lighting, or just to keep everyone on their toes. But, man, it was cold.”
Wilkins said it was the “weirdest of interviews”, where he was brought in swiftly after the credit roll via a voiceover guy.
“So that was it, sit down mic clipped on and I must admit it was quite intimidating. The full audience witnessing the daytime talk queen being grilled mercilessly by some bloke they’d never heard of before. And I think it’s fair to say Ellen likes asking questions more than she likes answering them.”
Wilkins said it was “definitely not a warm and fuzzy experience”. He also recalls a time when Ellen DeGeneres was in Australia for a promotional tour, with his executive producer at the time, Neil Breen, left “aghast” when Ellen refused to have any contact with anyone other than Richard Wilkins.
“She would walk on, do the thing, walk off — that was that. No photos, no autographs, no nothing.”
His story comes after ex-Ellen Show employees came forward with sexual misconduct and harrassment allegations. While many celebrities supported Ellen and she claimed in her statement that the ending of The Ellen Show was not to do with these allegations, as Richard Wilkins says, she “certainly suffered a major hit in popularity” last year.