Kelly Clarkson admitted changes are already in place for the fifth season of her talk show after accusations surfaced of a “toxic” working environment.
Clarkson said she “definitely was blindsided” by a report published in May where one current and 10 ex-staffers alleged abuses from producers and other high-ranking employees.
“I think the important thing is, we get into this mindset of canceling everything or everyone. And that’s not unhealthy because it’s like, ‘OK then …’ Because what you’re saying is every time somebody says something, then it’s just over,” she told The Hollywood Reporter.
“And that’s not how you work on things. You have to progress. You have to go, ‘Oh man, well, maybe we can do better at this. Obviously, we might have missed the mark here, so what can we do better?’”
Some of the changes being made on the show include moving production to New York. The variety show has been filmed on the Universal Studios Lot in Los Angeles since 2019.
“I know it sucks to have something, anything happen behind the scenes that you maybe didn’t know. But I think, also, it’s a great point,” Clarkson said. “Season five, let’s start, let’s remind everybody who we are, not only on the outside, but on the inside and how we like to carry ourselves and how we like to … I don’t know, just proceed in everyday work life.”
“I think that’s all that did for us is one, recognize: OK, there’s something wrong, maybe. I didn’t know when that first came out,” Clarkson said. “So, how do we fix this? How do we be better and better examples?”
She added, “So we’re already doing that, and adding on to what we already had planned initially, just to make sure everybody feels included and a part of the team.”
Clarkson also addressed another challenging part of her life – her divorce with ex-husband Brandon Blackstock.
The title track, “Red Flag Collector,” references Clarkson’s hardships through the contentious divorce, in addition to her bid to legally change her name.
“Well, I was really pissed off,” she said. “Things get said and you hear about this divorce and situation, things go back and it’s the craziest thing. It’s not real things that get said, and I was angry, but the foundation of that is hurt … And yeah, I just got it out. Didn’t I? I really said what I wanted to.”