Weeks after revelations surfaced that Bill O’Reilly settled several sexual harassment claims – leading to an advertiser exodus from his Fox News program – the embattled host is out of a job. The announcement came from parent 21st Century Fox.
“After a thorough and careful review of the allegations, the Company and Bill O’Reilly have agreed that Bill O’Reilly will not be returning to the Fox News Channel,” a statement read.
The news is not a complete surprise, but it is nonetheless stunning. O’Reilly, 67, has been hosting the network’s 8 p.m. program The O’Reilly Factor for two decades. And it has been the No. 1 show in cable news for 15 consecutive years, bringing in more than $400 million in ad revenue between 2014 and 2016, and $118 million in the first three quarters of 2016, according to Kantar Media.
And in recent years, O’Reilly has branched out with a series of best-selling books and spin-off TV movies on National Geographic Channel (majority owned by 21st Century Fox), which have broadened his brand outside of Fox News, where he earns about $18 million annually.
By the time O’Reilly signed off on April 11 for a pre-planned two-week vacation, the advertiser exodus – including blue chip brands Mercedes-Benz, Allstate, BMW, Bayer and Lexus – had reached more than 50. Many buyers were re-allocating their ad dollars to other Fox News programs. There was also external pressure from advocacy and women’s groups including Color of Change and the National Organization for Women
This story originally appeared in The Hollywood Reporter. To read the full story, CLICK HERE.