Don Lemon Doesn’t ‘Regret’ His Controversial Elon Musk Interview

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Don Lemon doesn’t “regret anything in life,” including his controversial interview with Elon Musk.

“I think everything is a success,” Lemon, 58, exclusively told Us Weekly at the 2024 TIME100 Gala in New York City on Thursday, April 25. “It depends on how you look at it, and I think everything helps you grow. If you react to it … it’s all in the way you react. I don’t regret it at all.”

Lemon launched his self-titled news show last month by sitting down for a one-on-one interview with the tech mogul, 52. However, The Don Lemon Show’s partnership with the Musk-owned social media platform X was abruptly canceled days before the series’ March 18 premiere. Lemon accused Musk of not believing in free speech in a statement about their conversation, during which they discussed topics such as former President Donald Trump and SpaceX.

“I think that the interview did good,” Lemon told Us, comparing viewers’ reactions to that of a Rorschach test, in which people look at inkblots and share what they see. “People will say, ‘Oh my god, Elon crushed it. He did well, he showed that Don Lemon.’ And then other people are like, ‘Don Lemon crushed that Elon,’ and whatever,” he explained. “That wasn’t what it was about.”

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Lemon continued: “I just wanted people to learn about me, him, and maybe they would learn something about themselves. But it’s been interesting to watch the reaction, and so I don’t regret it at all. I think it’s actually doing some good for the public.”

In Lemon’s initial March 13 statement, he claimed, “There were no restrictions on the interview that [Musk] willing agreed to, and my questions were respectful and wide ranging,” but that didn’t stop Musk from feeling “differently” about the interview than Lemon.

Don Lemon Doesn't Regret Controversial Elon Musk Interview That Got His X Show Canceled

Don Lemon and Elon Musk
Getty Images; FilmMagic

“His commitment to a global town square where all questions can be asked and all ideas can be shared seems not to include questions of him from people like me,” Lemon wrote.

In response to Lemon’s claims, X said in a statement that although the site “champions free speech,” they also “reserve the right to make decisions about our business partnerships, and after careful consideration, X decided not to enter into a commercial partnership with the show.”

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Musk, for his part, claimed via X that Lemon’s approach to the series was “basically just ‘CNN but on social media,’” and stated that the show “lacked authenticity.” Despite the conflict, Lemon went on to release his interview with Musk on X and has continued to air the show on X and other social media and streaming platforms.

When he’s not working on The Don Lemon Show, the former CNN anchor told Us that he enjoys hanging out with his husband, Tim Malone, and their dogs. (The couple wed in New York City earlier this month.)

Don Lemon Doesn't Regret Controversial Elon Musk Interview That Got His X Show Canceled 2

Don Lemon and Elon Musk
Don Lemon/YouTube

“We have Sunday family dinner every Sunday,” he shared. “In New York or wherever. If we’re out in the Hamptons, if we’re in New York, wherever we are, we have Sunday dinner, it’s date night. And then by the end of the night, he falls asleep before we can get to the movie. He falls asleep in the opening credits, which is part of my wedding vows, by the way.”

With reporting by Andrew Nodell

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