Some shows are just potential hotbeds for controversy, like any reality TV program where you toss a bunch of good-looking people from different parts of the country and give them access to unlimited booze. You'll have scandals, drama, mystery, and probably a bunch of fights.
While that sort of thing is to be expected on Flavor of Love, you don't really associate tea with Good Morning America, the most innocuous of daily shows. But apparently there's a lot of stuff going on behind the scenes with a controversial lawsuit.
What is the 'Good Morning America' lawsuit all about?
The Daily Beast reports that Michael Corn, a former senior executive producer, was sued by Kirstyn Crawford. She accused Corn of fostering a "toxic" workplace environment and that he sexually assaulted her. Corn, along with ABC, categorically denied the allegations, and they're pushing back against Crawford's claims, expressing that they have no issue in airing everything out in a court of law.
Apparently, the lawsuit has divided members of the production team down the line, with GMA co-host Robin Roberts reportedly saying on a group call, "If this happened to someone on my team, I would have burned the place down."
Her message, according to insiders that leaked the story to The Daily Beast, was geared at co-host George Stephanopoulos.
Why is Roberts apparently beefing with Stephanopoulos? Because he was named in Crawford's lawsuit and reportedly was made aware of the allegations some four years prior to the suit's filing. He continued working with Corn after such time.
Word on the street is that Stephanopoulos heard this dig at his credibility and was miffed his co-host would make such a remark, especially because he wasn't in the studio at the time.
George Stephanopoulos is currently isolating himself after his daughter tested positive for COVID-19. The Daily Beast reached out to his representative at the Creative Artists Agency, Alan Berger, but no comment on the host's behalf has been made as of yet.
The former Clinton White House aide is largely considered to be one of the most influential people at ABC News, but he's now coming under fire.
But the rumors that Roberts and Stephanopoulos are "at each other's throats" may just be hot air.
Caragh Fisher, a spokesperson for ABC stated that "Robin and George are fine," after responding to The Daily Beast story. Fisher also said that Roberts said she wasn't speaking about Stephanopoulos specifically: "She told him personally that she wasn’t referring to him and called the team the next day to reiterate that her comment was not about any one individual."
Some staffers have said that the workplace has been "chaotic" after news of the lawsuit broke. Multiple meetings and phone calls have been made to employees who are being grilled on anything and everything they know about Corn.
Shelley Ross, a former Good Morning America executive producer, offered up her opinion on how the matter should be handled.
"I’d say if so many weren’t already working remotely, I’d recommend a walk-out or all declare a mental health day off until management, Disney management promises to publish a full accounting of who knew what and when, who followed up and who didn’t, what was done and what should have been done," Ross said.
What does the 'Good Morning America' lawsuit allege Corn did to Crawford?
Crawford states that she spoke with George Stephanopoulos after the 2015 Academy Awards, which she attended with Michael Corn. In an Uber ride back to their hotel, the suit states Corn pulled Crawford's head into his chest where he kissed her and began rubbing her legs.
The suit also named Jill McClain, who worked with Corn at World News, and that she was also assaulted by the executive producer.
If you need support, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673 or visit RAINN.org to chat online one-on-one with a support specialist at any time.