Comedian Kevin Hart is the latest star to publicly defend Ellen DeGeneres, amid controversy over an allegedly toxic environment on her talk show.
DeGeneres is one of the most high-profile figures on US TV but is facing calls to quit her popular daytime chat show following accusations senior staff had been bullying and intimidating on set.
She apologised and said she is “committed to ensuring this does not happen again”. Warner Bros also said it would make staffing changes.
Hart has now shared a public message of support for the beleaguered DeGeneres, saying the internet has “become a crazy world of negativity”.
The Jumanji star wrote on Instagram: “It’s crazy to see my friend go thru what she’s going thru publicly. I have known Ellen for years and I can honestly say that she’s one of the dopest people on the f****** planet.
“She has treated my family and my team with love and respect from day 1. The internet has become a crazy world of negativity….we are falling in love with peoples down fall. It’s honestly sad…When did we get here? I stand by the ones that I know and that I love.
“Looking forward to the future where we get back to loving one another….this hate shit has to stop. Hopefully it goes out of style soon….”
Hart, one of Hollywood’s biggest comic stars, said his support of DeGeneres was not intended to “disregard the feelings of others”, but “simply to show what my experiences have been with my friend”.
Singer Katy Perry had earlier defended DeGeneres. The pop star, who is expecting her first child with fiance Orlando Bloom, said she was sending the chat show host “love & a hug”.
She tweeted: “I know I can’t speak for anyone else’s experience besides my own but I want to acknowledge that I have only ever had positive takeaways from my time with Ellen & on the @theellenshow. I think we all have witnessed the light & continual fight for equality that she has brought the world through her platform for decades.”
And DeGeneres’s wife, the actress Portia De Rossi, posted a picture to Instagram reading: “I stand by Ellen” and wrote in the caption: “To all our fans… we see you. Thank you for your support.”
DeGeneres has hosted her self-titled show since 2003. The comedian and actress is known for her bubbly on-screen persona and “be kind” mantra, often taking part in lavish giveaways or acts of charity.
But that image has been rocked by recent allegations. A Buzzfeed News investigation made a series of claims about the alleged toxic culture on the daytime talk show.