Steve Harvey is packing up “The Steve Harvey Show,” which marked its final day of production in Chicago today after shooting for five years in the city. The show is moving to Los Angeles, where Robert Feder’s Chicago media blog reports that the talk show will morph into a daytime series called “Steve.”
But the headlines surrounding the show have been all about a harsh email Feder uncovered, which Harvey admits he sent to the show’s staff at the start of the current season. The memo, which is reprinted in full in Feder’s blog post, reads in part:
“I’d like you all to review and adhere to the following notes and rules for Season 5 of my talk show.
“There will be no meetings in my dressing room. No stopping by or popping in. NO ONE.
“Do not come to my dressing room unless invited.
“Do not open my dressing room door. IF YOU OPEN MY DOOR, EXPECT TO BE REMOVED.
“My security team will stop everyone from standing at my door who have the intent to see or speak to me.
“I want all the ambushing to stop now. That includes TV staff.
“You must schedule an appointment.”
Since word got out about the memo, Harvey has been the target of a torrent of criticism. But Harvey told ET’s Kevin Frazier in a phone interview today that he’s standing behind the email — and he explained the motivation behind it.
“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,” Harvey told Frazier. “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.”
He did say that “in hindsight, I probably should’ve handled it a little bit differently.” But he added:
“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.”
Click on the link here to ET Online to read the rest of Harvey’s comments to Frazier.