Tough times. Billy Bush was in tears after his 2005 Access Hollywood video with Donald Trump — in which both men make vulgar comments about women — was released, a source tells Us Weekly.
According to the insider, the 44-year-old TV personality is scared that the scandal has caused permanent damage to his career.
“Billy was devastated and crying when the leaked tape of him with Donald Trump in 2005 was first leaked to The Washington Post,” the source tells Us of the Today cohost’s fragile emotional state. “He was crying that his career was over.”
The insider tells Us that Access Hollywood producers recalled Bush and Trump’s offensive interaction from 11 years ago after the Associated Press recently ran an article quoting former Apprentice employees saying that the Republican presidential nominee, 70, "was lewd and sexist" while taping the reality show.
“It got out after the AP story about Donald talking about women on the Apprentice set came out last week. Everyone at Access Hollywood was talking about it and how to cover it,” the source explains. “One of the producers remembered the 2005 tape and the Access tape librarian went through the archives to find the tape.”
According to CNN, the AP story, along with Trump's fat-shaming comments about Miss Universe alum Alicia Machado, contributed to Access Hollywood's decision to uncover the tape.
In the controversial clip, which leaked to The Washington Post on Friday, October 7, Bush and the business mogul engage in misogynistic banter about Trump’s failed attempts to “f–k” a married woman (later to be identified as Nancy O’Dell) before taping a segment for Access Hollywood.
Not long after the video made its way online — and caused a media firestorm — Bush deleted his Twitter account and issued an apology in a statement to Us.
"Obviously I'm embarrassed and ashamed," he told Us on Friday. "It's no excuse, but this happened 11 years ago — I was younger, less mature and acted foolishly in playing along. I'm very sorry." (Bush was 33 and Trump was 59 at the time.)
On Monday morning, NBC announced that Bush was suspended from the Today show indefinitely.
"We want to note one other thing. Pending further review of the matter, NBC News has suspended Billy Bush as the host of Today's third hour for his role in that conversation with Donald Trump," Today’s Savannah Guthrie told viewers during Monday’s broadcast.
Though a second source told Us that Bush’s Today cohosts Matt Lauer, Tamron Hall and Al Roker strongly dislike him, a show insider insists that there is no bad blood among the morning show colleagues.
“The anchors and hosts of the show each had a good relationship with Billy,” the source assures Us. “The show staff is comfortable with how the situation is being handled.”