Don Lemon Demands $5 Million Advance, Tesla Cybertruck, Equity Stake in X Before Elon Musk Canceled His Talk Show: Report

By Giuliano De Leon

Mar 16, 2024 06:15 AM EDT

Don Lemon had reportedly demanded $5 million, a Tesla Cybertruck, and more from Elon Musk before the tech billionaire canceled his new show on X.

Musk canceled "The Don Lemon Show" on his social media platform after he sat for the program's first interview, which was supposed to be aired next week. 

CNN moderator Don Lemon speaks to the crowd attending the Democratic Presidential Debate at the Fox Theatre July 31, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan.
(Photo : Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Elon Musk Canceled Don Lemon's Deal With X

Sources told The New York Post that Elon Musk agreed to an interview with Don Lemon despite knowing the host had outlandish demands. Lemon's agents at the United Talent Agency sent the interview proposal to X's team last December.

The partnership between Lemon and X was announced in January. However, an X spokesperson told The Post that the firm "did not have a final or signed agreement" with Lemon or "The Don Lemon Show" before Musk was interviewed last week.

According to Lemon, the deal was terminated because Musk did not like the tough questions he asked him during the interview. However, Musk said his decision to cancel the platform's partnership with Lemon was because he did not like his "approach."

"His approach was basically just 'CNN, but on social media', which doesn't work, as evidenced by the fact that CNN is dying. And instead of it being the real Don Lemon, it was really just [former CNN chief] Jeff Zucker talking through Don, so lacked authenticity. All this said, Lemon/Zucker are of course welcome to build their viewership on this platform along with everyone else," Musk wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.

Read Also: Elon Musk Abruptly Cancels 'The Don Lemon Show' on X; Former CNN Anchor Says the Billionaire Got 'Mad' at Him

What Don Lemon Demands From Elon Musk

Don Lemon allegedly demanded many things from the X owner before "The Don Lemon Show" was canceled on the platform.

A document reviewed by The Post revealed that Lemon demanded a free Tesla Cybertruck, a $5 million upfront payment in addition to an $8 million salary, an equity stake in the company, and the right to approve any changes in X policy regarding news content.

People familiar with the matter told The Post that Lemon also wanted to go to a Las Vegas convention via a private jet, with the company paying for a suite for him and his fiance and their bill for drinking and massages. 

However, sources also said the talks stalled over Lemon's extensive demands, which also included executive assistants and a marketing budget worth between $10 million and $15 million.

In reaction to the report, a spokesperson for Lemon told The New York Post: "There is nothing in your list of demands that you claim Don made of X that is true. Literally nothing."

Nevertheless, Lemon said in a video posted to X that the recorded interview with Musk will be aired on YouTube and via podcast on Monday.

Related Article: Why Elon Musk Could Greatly Benefit From Donald Trump Winning the 2024 Election, Law Experts Explain 

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