Jimmy Kimmel is a producer on the latest ESPN 30 for 30 project, Once upon a time in Queens, and he joined the SI media podcast with Jimmy Traina to discuss the documentary. What he might not have planned to talk about was the friction between himself, Howie Long, and Terry Bradshaw.
Kimmel worked on the FOX NFL pre-game show from 1999-2002; meanwhile, he fell on the wrong side of Long and Bradshaw.
“I was going through stories the other day with guys I had just met,” Kimmel said on the show. “I was telling story after story, and I was like… ‘what’s with these guys that don’t like me, don’t they have a sense of humor?’ And as I was telling story after story, I was like, ‘Of course they didn’t like me, it doesn’t make sense that they love me’, I was an asshole.
Long and Bradshaw were upset with Kimmel’s jokes about them, which Jimmy Kimmel clarified on the podcast as poorly edited for television.
“They were editing my tracks at FOX, and they were doing a really bad job,” Kimmel described. “They were editing them like they were editing sports tracks, which doesn’t work for comedy, and I really wanted to control those tracks, and the guys hated me. “
Jimmy Kimmel described the meetings FOX had had to see if they should fire him.
“They would have these meetings and be like ‘you have to get rid of this guy, why are you giving this asshole our time, he’s laughing at us, he’s no fun, he sucks, get rid of the guy. ‘ So Scott [Ackerson] came up with one of the worst plans ever.
The plan ended up being a call-in vote to remove Jimmy Kimmel from the show based on viewers’ calls. Yes, FOX left the fate of Kimmel’s NFL pre-game show to the masses, and they decided to keep it. Listen to the rest of the interview here on Apple, Spotify and Stapler.