When Ellen DeGeneres left “American Idol” after only one yr as a choose on the show, she mentioned in a press release she wished to maintain “discovering, supporting and nurturing younger expertise” reasonably than choose and “probably harm their emotions.” But a younger singer she took below her wing on the time now claims in a scathing interview that he skilled simply the other with DeGeneres, calling her “insanely manipulative.”
Greyson Chance Says DeGeneres ‘Abandoned’ Him
In correlation with the discharge of his new album, “Palladium,” singer Greyson Chance sat down for a surprising interview with Rolling Stone, printed on September 22, 2022. In it, Chance mentioned DeGeneres promised she’d be the guardian and mentor he wanted within the leisure enterprise. But as a substitute, he now says working together with her was traumatizing.
In early 2010, a video went viral of 12-year-old Chance, performing Lady Gaga’s hit music “Paparazzi” in a expertise show. Producers of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” whisked the sixth grader and his mother from Oklahoma to Los Angeles to look on the show. DeGeneres stunned him with $10,000 and a brand new piano, however behind the scenes she promised him much more.
In between internet hosting her speak show and showing on “American Idol” that yr, DeGeneres launched her personal file label — referred to as eleveneleven — with Interscope Geffen A&M Records, signing Chance as her first artist. He instructed Rolling Stone that she mentioned, “I’m going to guard you. I’m going to be right here for you. We’re going to do that collectively.”
At first, DeGeneres was extremely engaged and supportive, he mentioned, hiring high-profile managers who’d labored with Lady Gaga and Madonna. She acquired him a big-time reserving agent, a publicist, and a model agent, too.In October 2010, simply 5 months after signing together with her new label, the tween launched a mini EP of songs and hit the highway, touring throughout the U.S. and Canada in addition to in London and Paris.
Chance instructed Rolling Stone that DeGeneres was “actually invested” but additionally grew to become “domineering and approach too controlling.”
So a lot so, in truth, that Chance instructed Rolling Stone, “I’ve by no means met somebody extra manipulative, extra self-centered, and extra blatantly opportunistic than her.”
Chance Says DeGeneres Often Berated People, Including His Mom
In the Rolling Stone interview, Chance gave examples of when he thought DeGeneres was too controlling, resembling when she noticed a preview video of an upcoming community efficiency. She did not prefer it, he mentioned, so he and the workforce needed to utterly redo it.
“If she had an opinion of any kind, the entire thing modified,” he mentioned, including that one textual content from her might change his plans for a day or a month, relying on the demand. “It was horrible,” he mentioned.
Chance’s mother Lisa recalled instances when DeGeneres “would undergo his garments” and be “a bit of controlling” about what the tween was sporting. One rule was that he might by no means put on leather-based, given DeGeneres’ dedication to veganism on the time.
“She would are available in and have a look at a rack, yell at stylists, berate individuals in entrance of me and say, ‘This is what you are sporting on the show,'” Chance remembered. “She was simply degrading to individuals.”
While opening for Miranda Cosgrove’s tour, Chance acquired an advance copy of the “Never Say Never” documentary on Justin Bieber, who was a good friend of the comic. DeGeneres wished Chance to look at it and model his profession after Bieber’s, however the tween mentioned he was too exhausted from touring to look at immediately.
“I’ll always remember this,” Chance instructed Rolling Stone of the second DeGeneres referred to as his mother concerning the Justin Bieber video. “I simply keep in mind listening to on the opposite facet of the telephone, simply yelling (and) beratement: ‘What kind of mom are you? Do you understand that I went out of my strategy to get this for you, and he cannot sit down and watch it?'”
Lisa remembers that day, too. She instructed Rolling Stone, “I do not keep in mind precisely what she mentioned, however she was berating.”
Chance Claims DeGeneres’ On-Air Concern For Him Was ‘Fake’
By 2012, Chance’s music and live performance tickets began to wane. That November, he launched his second album on the eleveneleven file label, “Truth Be Told, Part 1,” however when it did not take off, he mentioned DeGeneres “utterly deserted” him.
The file label dropped him. And the workforce she had initially employed — his agent, publicist and administration workforce — all disappeared. Chance instructed Rolling Stone he tried to succeed in DeGeneres, however she by no means referred to as again. He finally determined to stop the music enterprise for some time and give attention to faculty.
However, DeGeneres did invite him — by way of producers — to look on her show a number of extra instances, pretending on-air they nonetheless had an excellent relationship.
“Whenever I’d come on the show, it was such a faux smile,” he mentioned. “She would not even ask, ‘How are you doing? How are you holding up?’ It was similar to, ‘Here’s what we will speak about. We’ll see you on there.'”
In 2019, Chance appeared on the show, which he referred to as “a spot of energetic trauma for me,” understanding it might be good publicity for his first album in years, referred to as “Portraits.” He performed alongside together with her comfortable banter however deep down, it felt terrible and inauthentic.
“When I have a look at the interviews and I have a look at my eyes, I can see a lot anxiousness. I can simply see a lot PTSD as a result of I’m there holding on for expensive life going, ‘I would like this TV gig,'” Chance mentioned. “I used to be 100% faking it, and (I felt like) she’s 100% faking it with me, too.”
He additionally resented DeGeneres sharing how proud she was of him for popping out as homosexual two years prior.
“She had nothing to do with that,” he mentioned. “I hadn’t spoken to her in years… That’s so tousled, that you simply’re now exhibiting the world as if we’re so tight. We’re so good. And behind the scenes, you’re this insanely manipulative particular person.”
Chance, now 25, was clearly harm by all the expertise, sufficient in order that he refused to look one final time through the closing two weeks of her show in May 2022. His mother, in the meantime, mentioned she’s come to appreciate it was all enterprise for DeGeneres.
“I believe that Ellen is a businesswoman. And if one thing is not trending the way in which she desires it to, she’s going to place an finish to it as a result of it is enterprise for her,” she instructed Rolling Stone. “It’s not heat and fuzzy. I do not suppose she invited individuals to be part of her life or take somebody below their wing like she did if she did not wish to see one thing come of it. If it wasn’t transferring quick sufficient for her, that is when she began to close down or shut us out.”
Rolling Stone additionally spoke with Emily Luther, whom DeGeneres additionally signed to her file label, alongside Luther’s good friend — and now music celebrity — Charlie Puth. Luther mentioned her expertise with DeGeneres was much like Chance’s, saying the star let her and her household down.
“She is somebody that wishes to manage issues and would not wish to take recommendation from individuals who would possibly know a bit of bit extra about methods to do issues,” Luther mentioned of DeGeneres. “She desires to be the one who will get the glory.”
Puth, who left DeGeneres’ file label inside a yr of signing together with her, didn’t take part within the Rolling Stone story, however he appeared on one in all her closing reveals, throughout which she took credit score for locating him.
“I say it on a regular basis, I found you,” she instructed him on the show. “I take credit score to your total profession.”
“You did,” Puth mentioned unenthusiastically, as he appeared on the viewers. “Handclap for her. She did it.”
DeGeneres ended her show after 19 years in May 2022, two years after allegations of harassment and misconduct on her set have been uncovered by BuzzFeed and her scores suffered. She has not publicly responded to Chance’s claims.