Update: 21st Century Fox officially announced Bill O'Reilly is not coming back to Fox News, according to a statement shared on Twitter by Politico reporter Hadas Gold. The statement read, "After thorough and careful review of the allegations, the Company and Bill O'Reilly have agreed that Bill O'Reilly will not be returning to Fox News Channel."
Update, 12:40 p.m.: Fox News executives are preparing to announce Bill O'Reilly's departure from the network, New York Magazine reported. The announcement is expected to be made before the conservative host gets back from his vacation in Italy, which is supposed to last until April 24.
Sources told NY Mag that O’Reilly’s exit negotiations have been moving quickly. The host recently signed a multiyear contract with the network, and he was expected to be paid over $20 million per year. It's unclear what the outcome of the negotiations will be when it comes to the money issue. But when former CEO Roger Ailes left the network last summer, he got paid $40 million, which amounted to the remainder of his contract.
This story was originally published on April 18, 2017.
Allegations against O'Reilly continue to mount. One Black woman came forward today to say that O'Reilly had called her "hot chocolate" and leered at her. "He would never talk to her, not even hello, except to grunt at her like a wild boar," attorney Lisa Bloom tells The Hollywood Reporter. "He would leer at her. He would always do this when no one else was around and she was scared."
The decision about O'Reilly's fate is expected to come within the week, as his vacation from The O'Reilly Factor will be over in just six days. The decision will likely be made at the Thursday meeting of 21st Century Fox's board of directors. O'Reilly's future is apparently on the agenda.
Fox has not yet confirmed these reports, which is no surprise given the delicate nature of the negotiations — and the massive public outcry against O'Reilly.
"Sources describe the Murdoch family discussions as fraught," NY Mag's Gabriel Sherman writes of Fox News founder Rupert Murdoch and his sons, Lachlan and James. "In some ways, deciding O’Reilly’s fate is more complicated than the decision to oust Ailes last summer. O’Reilly is Fox’s highest-rated host and the linchpin of the prime-time schedule, so his removal could have immediate effects on the network’s ratings. And according to one Fox source, Rupert has told people he does not want to fire O’Reilly because it would make it appear he was forced into a decision by 'the New York Times.'"
The news comes amidst a firestorm of controversy generated by a New York Times story detailing the laundry list of allegations against and settlements paid out by Fox News and O'Reilly. Women's groups have planned protests against the host and advertisers have exited The O'Reilly Factor as calls for a boycott have increased. Five women accused O’Reilly of sexual harassment or inappropriate conduct, resulting in settlements totaling about $13 million.
Fox News will no longer confirm that O'Reilly is returning to the air next week.
We've reached out to Fox News for comment and will update this article when we hear back.