MSNBC president Phil Griffin once “waved around” a paparazzi photo of Access Hollywood correspondent Maria Menounos’ exposed vulva during a staff meeting, Ronan Farrow alleges in his upcoming book.
Over the weekend, journalist Yashar Ali shared an excerpt from Farrow’s book — Catch and Kill — which says Griffin printed out the image to display to network employees and made a suggestive comment. The anecdote is undated, but the photo was taken in 2010, and Menounos worked for NBCUniversal’s Access Hollywood from 2005 to 2011.
1. One particularly disturbing scene in @RonanFarrow’s book…
Phil Griffin, the current president of MSNBC, waving around a zoomed in photo of Maria Menounos’s vagina in a staff meeting.
— Yashar Ali 🐘 (@yashar) October 13, 2019
“Would you look at that?” Griffin allegedly told colleagues, before adding, “Not bad.”
Menounos previously described the 2010 photo of her getting out of the ocean in Miami on New Year’s Eve as “the most embarrassing moment of my life.”
“I finally came out [of the water] and I’m like, ‘These people are not stopping.’ I’m like, ‘Wow, is Britney Spears behind me? What’s going on?’ Oh no, my vagina’s out. That’s it,” she said of the photo in an interview with HuffPost.
According to Farrow’s book, the alleged incident was far from the first time that Griffin, who has led MSNBC since 2008, made coarse comments.
“[F]our colleagues said Griffin was known for making lewd or crass remarks in work emails,” the book reads.
He is also accused of forcing female producers to accompany him to a peep show in New York City’s Times Square while he was a senior producer on NBC’s Nightly News in the 1990s.