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Billy Bush is in talks to return to television on Extra following its move from NBC owned-and-operated stations to Fox TV Stations in seven major markets, sources confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter.
The news comes over two years after Bush was let go from the Today show for his part in a leaked 2005 Access Hollywood video. The footage was obtained and published by The Washington Post in October 2016, just one month before the presidential election. In the video, Bush and then-Apprentice host Donald Trump could be heard engaging in what many considered to be misogynistic banter.
Last October, on the anniversary of the fallout, Bush reflected on the fiasco on his Instagram. “Two years ago today, my life went from order to chaos in a dramatic instant,” he wrote. “I accounted for my small part, while the President and my employer walked away and still haven’t accounted for their actions. These past couple years have been character building to say the least – anxiety attacks, fits of rage, feelings of betrayal and abandonment – and I have concluded that I am NOT extraordinary. Terrible things can happen at any moment to ANYONE.”
Bush also told THR in a May 2017 cover story what he has learned from the ordeal. “It’s been a roller coaster. If you start from the day everything happened, Friday, Oct.?7, it was just instant shock. Things were happening way too fast, and a media circus developed. I’ve never been the type that the paparazzi would be interested in,” he said. “So that early part was just chaos. But then things progressed, and when you have a big, traumatic event, you go through stages, and it led to acceptance and understanding. And then I found myself in a place of soul searching. And I developed a commitment to become a better, fuller man.”
Cleared in 93 percent of the country for fall 2019, Extra will join the FTS lineups in markets including New York; Los Angeles; Philadelphia; Dallas; San Francisco; Orlando, Florida; and Charlotte, North Carolina. The Emmy-winning syndicated series is already airing on Fox owned-and-operated stations in Chicago, Detroit and Washington, D.C. In total, Extra will now air on 10 Fox owned-stations.
Warner Bros. Domestic TV Distribution, who produces the syndicated newsmagazine, and Fox TV Stations both declined comment.
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