Following the release of the Fox News drama Bombshell, Megyn Kelly (portrayed in the film by Charlize Theron) is not only speaking out about her portrayal in the film, but also what she feels the film got wrong.
In a round table interview, Kelly brought together her fellow former Fox colleagues — Juliet Huddy (former host of Fox’s The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet), Rudi Bakhtiar (former Fox News reporter) and Julie Zann (former associate producer of Fox News Live) — as well as her husband Douglas Brunt to share their reactions on how Bombshell portrayed their real-life experiences with sexual harassment at the network.
PEOPLE is out the film’s studio Lionsgate for comment.
The movie “Bombshell” is a Hollywood film about the sexual harassment scandal at Fox News. I have no connection to the film, and hold no stake at all in it. I do, however, have a connection to many of the women who actually lived it. Here is their account. https://t.co/LCkdYvF6qr— Megyn Kelly (@megynkelly) January 9, 2020
The wide-ranging discussion was to allow the women to tell their own stories in their own words.
“So a couple of things about the movie I wanted to point out that were not true,” Kelly said, after admitting she felt the film “took liberties.” “They suggest that I had run my debate question for Trump by the Murdochs. That’s a fantasy. I never ran it by [Roger] Ailes or the Murdochs or anyone other than my debate team, so that was not true.”
During the first Republican presidential debate in 2015, Kelly asked then-candidate Donald Trump, “You’ve called women you don’t like fat pigs, dogs, slobs and disgusting animals … Your Twitter account has several disparaging comments about women’s looks. You once told a contestant on the Celebrity Apprentice it would be a pretty picture to see her on her knees. Does that sound to you like the temperament of a man we should elect as president? And how do you answer the charge from Hillary Clinton – that you are part of the war on women?”
“The Murdochs and I never spoke prior to my calling Lachlan Murdoch [Fox Network’s CEO],” she added in the round table interview. “Lachlan in my experience was a stand-up guy, and immediately did the right thing when I called him — immediately. And his words to me after I told him what happened to me were, ‘I’m sorry.'”
“The notion that Roger liked the Donald Trump woman question because it created controversy and a TV moment was not true,” Kelly added. “Roger did not like that question — at all — and was very angry at me for asking it, and at one point, actually said to me, ‘No more female empowerment stuff.'”
“And there certainly were no protests of me at the GOP convention,” Kelly continued. “There were other people protesting. That was all BS.”
Kelly and Huddy also say a scene in which the two meet was fictional.
“Our scene never happened,” Kelly said to Huddy.
“Yeah it never happened,” Huddy agreed. “Although it was lovely. But yeah, it never happened.”
Regarding how the film depicted former Fox News CEO Ailes, Zann said the environment he fostered was “worse than that.” “So that was my immediate take-away,” she shared. So this is it. You really let off Roger easily.”
Kelly also provided her reaction to being portrayed on the big screen by Theron.
“I can’t speak to the job Charlize Theron did,” Kelly said. “I’m just too close to it. It’s just too weird to see somebody who looks just like you on the screen, pretending to be you.”
Kelly has previously opened up about her thoughts on Bombshell in an Instagram post she shared last month, featuring a photo of her youngest son Thatcher staring up at a poster of the Golden Globe-nominated film.
“My husband @dougbrunt and I recently took our three kids to see the movie ‘Frozen 2.’ As we walked into the theatre, our 6-year-old stopped at this poster promoting another movie hitting the big screen,” Kelly wrote in the caption. “The ad confused him because it appears to show a picture of me.”
“Sexual harassment is pervasive in this country; it can leave scars that do not heal,” Kelly added. “My heart goes out to those who’ve gone through it, who I hope might find some comfort in this story. As for my thoughts about the film, I’ll have more soon.”
The film also stars Margot Robbie as a fictional Fox News employee and Kate McKinnon as a producer on the show.
Theron received a Screen Actors Guild Award nomination and a Golden Globe nomination for her portrayal of Kelly. Kidman and Robbie also received SAG Awardsfor their performances, with Robbie also nabbing a Golden Globe nomination.
Bombshell is out in theaters now.