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Don Lemon breaks silence on list of diva demands to join Elon Musk’s X: ‘People negotiate all the time’

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Houston, we have a problem…

After his reps adamantly denied that Don Lemon had a list of diva demands to join Elon Musk’s X, the ousted anchor admitted in a new interview, “People negotiate all the time.”

Lemon didn’t deny whether he really had ambitions to be the first podcaster in space — the most out-of-this-world request among a heap of sky-high demands he made when hashing out his contract with Elon Musk’s X platform.

Before Lemon was axed from his X gig by Musk, he’d put in the moonshot request to go to space — and also wanted a $5 million advance on top of an $8 million base salary, plus equity and veto power over the site’s news policies and its creative roster, The Post previously also reported. 

When asked about the report in a new podcast interview with Mediaite editor in chief Aidan McLaughlin, Lemon, 58, brushed it all off as “nonsense” — but then admitted that it’s all part of negotiating a deal.

Don Lemon
Don Lemon says he doesn’t read The Post — he should! Mediaite
Don Lemon
Don Lemon says he has not spoken with Elon Musk since his show was abruptly canceled.

When McLaughlin told Lemon, “The New York Post has been reporting some stuff… that you made a bunch of requests from X. That you asked for a Cybertruck, an $8 million annual salary,” and other demands, Lemon replied, “Oh come on. That is nonsense. People negotiate all the time, but that’s, come on. It’s obviously a deflection.”

Lemon — who was axed from his X show after it debuted with his ill-fated Musk interview — deflected a bit himself by saying of The Post’s reports, “it has nothing to do with the interview, and I’m not going to fall into that. I don’t read the New York Post, but I do love their horoscopes. It’s great. I’m a Pisces, by the way, so you can read my horoscope to know what’s going on in my life.”

Don Lemon
The Post reported that Lemon wanted to do his show from space on a Musk rocket. X / Don Lemon

When he was asked earlier in the Mediaite podcast if he reads The Post, Lemon scoffed, “No, I don’t read the New York Post. Oh, I do read the New York Post. I lied. I read the horoscopes in the New York Post.”

The Post reported that a bulleted item in Lemon’s demands allegedly read, “First podcast in space to be hosted by Don (via SpaceX).”

The document, as reviewed by The Post, was sent last December — a month before Musk and Lemon announced their partnership to create a show for X.

Don Lemon
Lemon dished about his departure from X in a Mediaite interview. Mediaite

Lemon’s reps did not comment on the space request, but previously adamantly denied any of the wild demands by the former CNN host.

Jay Sures — Lemon’s agent and vice chairman at Hollywood agency UTA — told The Post: “This is absolute, complete utter nonsense without an iota of truth to it.”

Former CNN spokesperson Allison Gollust also commented on Lemon’s behalf, “There is nothing in your list of demands that you claim Don made of X that is true. Literally nothing.”

Don Lemon
The host had previously been “stunned” when he was ousted from CNN. Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

Also in the Mediaite interview, Lemon revealed that he has not heard from his former Tesla mogul boss since they parted ways.

“No, I have not heard from him,” Lemon said of Musk. “We used to text occasionally, not a lot.”

He added of their surprise split, “there’s no lawyers working on anything. I am under the assumption that we had a deal and they have to abide by the terms of the deal. If they don’t do that within the the limits of the contract, then we’ll be forced to take legal action.”

Lemon added, again seemingly avoiding talking about his contract with X, “I don’t like to talk about money or terms. I just find it gauche. It’s just not done. That’s the reason I have an agent.”

Don Lemon
The anchor said his lawyers have not been negotiating his exit. Stephen Lovekin/Shutterstock
Don Lemon
Lemon spent the summer in the Hamptons after his CNN departure. Getty Images

The anchor also said of his Musk interview, “I have nothing against Elon Musk. I had no agenda except for people to get to know about him, to get to know about me, and maybe to get to learn something about themselves. I thought I was doing what he wanted on the platform.”

Musk fired Lemon before their debut episode even aired, after taping the testy talk on Mar. 8 when Lemon asked the tech mogul about Politics, alleged drug use and his content moderation policies.

Musk, who initially wooed Lemon to X, then canceled the online show after deeming Lemon’s performance “dull” and “underwhelming,” and saying Lemon’s eponymous program was “basically just ‘CNN, but on social media.’”

 

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