Steve Harvey is speaking out regarding the leaked memo he sent to staff, telling them not to “ambush” him in the hallways of his The Steve Harvey Show talk show.
ET’s Kevin Frazier exclusively talked to the 60-year-old TV host over the phone on Thursday, where he clarified his comments.
“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,” he explained. “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.”
“Look man, I’m in my makeup chair, they walk in the room. I’m having lunch, they walk in, they don’t knock,” he continued. “I’m in the hallway, I’m getting ambushed by people with friends that come to the show and having me sign this and do this. I just said, ‘Wait a minute.’ And in hindsight, I probably should’ve handled it a little bit differently.”
Harvey continued on, telling ET that he sent the email “asking everyone to simply honor and respect” his privacy.
“If you come out your house, you don’t want anybody on your porch waiting on you,” he said. “You walk to your car, you don’t want people bothering you on your way to your car. Everybody wants the freedom to be able to move around.”
“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,” he added. “I don’t apologize about the letter, but it’s kind of crazy what people who took this thing and ran, man. I appreciate you asking me.”
Earlier on Thursday, a source close to production on The Steve Harvey Show told ET that the email that leaked on Robert Feder’s media blog was real and was sent to the entire staff. In the message, Harvey was adamant that his co-workers “adhere” to a new set of rules going into the next season of the show, which will now be taped in Los Angeles.