Weeks after Hart stepped down as Oscar host, he appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in January 2019, where Ellen allowed him to play victim over his past homophobic comments and diminish his critics as "trolls" and "haters." This morning, Hart returned the favor as DeGeneres is receiving backlash over reports of a toxic workplace environment. "It’s crazy to see my friend go thru what she’s going thru publicly," Hart wrote on Instagram. "I have known Ellen for years and I can honestly say that she’s one of the dopest people on the f*cking planet. She has treated my family and my team with love and respect from day 1. The internet has become a crazy world of negativity....we are falling in love with peoples down fall. It’s honestly sad...When did we get here? I stand by the ones that I know and that I love. Looking forward to the future where we get back to loving one another....this hate sh*t has to stop. Hopefully it goes out of style soon....This post is not meant to disregard the feelings of others and their experiences....It’s simply to show what my experiences have been with my friend. Love you for life Ellen..."
Ellen executive producers promised "concrete changes" in a series of Zoom meetings with staff on Monday: "Any culture of fear is done,” executive producers Andy Lassner, Mary Connelly, and Derek Westervelt told staffers, according to Buzzfeed News' Krystie Lee Yandoli, who has been reporting on the show's toxic culture. "Instead of having a single staff meeting with all employees, Lassner, Connelly, and Westervelt held separate meetings over Zoom with the different departments on the show," adds Yandoli. "The executive producers also told employees they’re 'blind to the investigation' and will update them 'as the investigation plays out.' They also noted their lack of oversight on the show’s rapid growth over the years, and gave employees the name of a specific HR representative whom they could go to with any comments or concerns."
Jay Leno has Ellen's back: "I don’t discard a 40-year friendship on hearsay. The Ellen I know has raised over $125 million dollars for charity and has always been a kind and decent person. I fully support her."
Adam Carolla defends Ellen by saying every workplace is toxic: "I'm no fan of @theellenshow but do we really need an investigation into whether her workplace was 'toxic'?" he tweeted. "Every job site I ever worked on was toxic. And how toxic can it be if there's air conditioning and free food every day?"