- Tucker Carlson and Don Lemon have hired the same lawyer after leaving their respective networks.
- Bryan Freedman is known as the go-to lawyer for multimillion-dollar payouts in messy media breakups.
- He’s worked for former TV hosts at ABC, NBC, and CNN, and for a long list of celebrities.
Fox News host Tucker Carlson and CNN anchor Don Lemon both left their networks on Monday and have hired the same powerhouse lawyer to handle their departures, reports say.
Neither host has announced a lawsuit or dispute against their employer. But the litigator they’ve retained, Bryan Freedman, has a record of helping TV hosts secure millions from their old networks.
Former CNN chief media correspondent Brian Stelter said on Monday he’d been told that both Carlson and Lemon were retaining Freedman’s services. The New York Times reported that Lemon had hired Freedman.
Messy media breakups are a staple for Freedman, who’s famous for aggressively representing a laundry list of the entertainment world’s most prominent figures. His clients include Vin Diesel, Quentin Tarantino, and Mariah Carey.
Freedman helped Megyn Kelly secure about $30 million from NBC when she parted ways with the network in 2019. Kelly was fired halfway through her three-year contract worth $69 million, but NBC agreed to pay her the remainder of her original salary.
In 2021, Freedman represented the longtime “Bachelor” host Chris Harrison, who received roughly $10 million to exit ABC after facing backlash over his comments about the show, Variety reported.
Chris Cuomo, fired by CNN in December 2021, also hired Freedman in his ongoing $125 million wrongful-termination suit against the network.
Lemon, like Cuomo, appears to have left CNN on a bitter note. In a tweet on Monday, Lemon said that he’d been “terminated by CNN” and that he was “stunned.”
“After 17 years at CNN I would have thought that someone in management would have had the decency to tell me directly,” he tweeted.
“It is clear that there are some larger issues at play,” Lemon added.
CNN has disputed Lemon’s statement, saying that he “was offered an opportunity to meet with management but instead released a statement on Twitter.”
As for Carlson, The Wall Street Journal reported he knew about his departure only about 10 minutes before the network announced it.
The Daily Beast reported that Carlson told his staff, “I have no idea what’s going on.”
Freedman did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment for Carlson and Lemon, sent outside regular business hours. Lemon’s agent did not immediately respond to a similar request.