Another hot-mic moment has Billy Bush under scrutiny, but this time, it seems the leaked audio won’t cost the TV host a job.
On Friday, January 6, The Daily Beast published audio of Bush making a sexualized joke about Kendall Jenner on the set of Extra on October 31, 2022. As he looked at a photo of Jenner dressed up as Jessie from Toy Story 2, Bush made a wisecrack referencing Toy Story character Woody. “Kendall goes as Jessie and, believe me, there were a lot of woodies,” Bush said in the audio, with production staffers laughing in response.
In the segment that made it to air, however, Bush gave a toned-down comment on Jenner’s Jessie get-up, saying that it would “be hard to see Toy Story ever the same way.”
But the Extra team is supporting Bush, who has hosted the syndicated newsmagazine since 2019. “As with many forms of production in the entertainment industry, the show’s creative process allows the flexibility to try different jokes and banter,” a representative for Telepictures, Extra’s production company, said in a statement to The Daily Beast. “In the end, some material lands on the cutting room floor, including remarks that may be too edgy to air on broadcast television.”
In 2016, Bush was fired from Today after The Washington Post published audio of a 2005 conversation between Bush and Donald Trump in which Bush, then with Access Hollywood, laughed as Trump bragged about grabbing women by their genitals.
“Looking back upon what was said on that bus, I wish I had changed the topic. [Trump] liked TV and competition. I could’ve said, ‘Can you believe the ratings on whatever?’ But I didn’t have the strength of character to do it,” Bush later told The Hollywood Reporter. “I was shocked and alarmed [by the leaked video] and totally and completely gutted. It was awful. And my participation was awful, too.”