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Megyn Kelly, Fox News accusers react to Bombshell: "It was worse than that"

Illustration for article titled Megyn Kelly, Fox News accusers react to Bombshell: "It was worse than that"
Photo: Lionsgate

Bombshell, last year’s look at the women who helped expose former Fox News head Roger Ailes’ history of sexual harassment, could’ve been good. But, as we noted in our review, the film’s “kid-gloves approach” to its real-life subjects stripped the narrative of its innate complexity. “[T]he film is a snappy, glib tour of recent history in the Adam McKay mold,” we wrote, “hydroplaning through the stormy real-life events that led to Ailes’ departure from Fox News with windshield wipers on high and blinders strapped to each side of its head.”


Still, one wonders what the women depicted in the film, including former Fox anchor Megyn Kelly—played by Charlize Theron in the film—make of Jay Roach’s approach, which, as Kelly notes, was made without their input. Well, Kelly just posted a video to her YouTube channel in which she talks it through with fellow accusers Juliet Huddy, Rudi Bakhtiar, and Julie Zann, as well as her husband, Douglas Brunt. And while the film “got a lot right,” per the panel, everyone agrees that, well, it was actually even shittier.

“It was worse than that,” recalls a tearful Zann. “That was my immediate takeaway: ‘Oh, this is it. Wow, you really let Roger off easy.’”

Kelly agrees, noting that one of the film’s liberties included Ailes loving the press Kelly received after asking then-candidate Donald Trump about his insulting comments towards women at a 2015 debate. “He didn’t like the question at all,” she says. “And at one point he actually told me, ‘No more female empowerment stuff.’”

All that said, the scene in which Margot Robbie’s composite character is asked to “twirl” for Ailes struck a chord, and Kelly and Zann both recall the shame they felt after acquiescing to the request. “If you don’t get how demeaning that is, I can’t help you,” says Kelly. Huddy, meanwhile, remembers Ailes telling her to “turn around” during a staff meeting. “‘Let me see your ass,’” she recalls him saying.

Kelly also took an opportunity to reflect on that period of her life and career. “The truth is that I’ve looked back on my own life, every moment from that moment forward, and I do wish I had done more,” she says. “Even though I was powerless, even though it would have been a suicidal move career-wise. What if I had just said, ‘Screw it’?”

In lighter takeaways, Kelly enjoyed Mark Duplass’ performance as her husband, though the real Brunt would’ve preferred Dwayne Johnson. Har dee har.


Watch the fill video below.

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Randall Colburn is The A.V. Club's Internet Culture Editor. He lives in Chicago, occasionally writes plays, and was a talking head in Best Worst Movie, the documentary about Troll 2.