Mariah Carey has finally broken her silence about her infamous 2008 appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, an interview that saw the host pressure her into revealing a pregnancy that later ended in miscarriage.
The ill-fated interview saw DeGeneres asking Carey to address tabloid rumours that she was expecting a baby with then-husband Nick Cannon.
“Don’t discuss that …” Carey said as the topic was raised, but DeGeneres had by then sprang from her chair to produce a bottle of champagne and two glasses, challenging Carey to drink.
“I can’t believe you did this to me, Ellen …” said a clearly uncomfortable Carey.
“What? I’m not going to ask you if you’re pregnant,” said DeGeneres, pouring her guest a big glass of champagne. “Let’s toast to you not being pregnant, if you’re not pregnant!”
“It’s too early for me, I only drink after 3pm,” Carey protested, eventually taking the tiniest of sips.
“You’re pregnant! You’re PREGNANT!” DeGeneres yelled.
Carey was in fact pregnant, but had not yet publicly announced it – but DeGeneres’ surprise stunt let the cat out of the bag.
Carey suffered a miscarriage soon after.
The singer reflected on the prank 12 years on in a new interview with Vulture.
“I was extremely uncomfortable with that moment is all I can say. And I really have had a hard time grappling with the aftermath,” she said.
“I wasn’t ready to tell anyone (about the aftermath) because I had had a miscarriage. I don’t want to throw anyone that’s already being thrown under any proverbial bus, but I didn’t enjoy that moment,” she told Vulture.
The singer said: “(There’s) an empathy that can be applied to those moments that I would have liked to have been implemented. But what am I supposed to do?”
Carey returned to The Ellen Show two years later, when she was pregnant with twins – daughter Monroe and son Moroccan. This time around, Ellen tried to guess the sex of Mariah’s baby. “I would prefer not … you can wait,” said Carey.
Carey’s revelations come as The Ellen Show weathers a PR crisis in 2020, with multiple allegations from former staff that the show is a “toxic” workplace and public apologies from the star herself.
The slew of bad press has also seen viewers cast a critical eye on some of Ellen’s most awkward celebrity interviews – among them, tense encounters with Katy Perry, Taylor Swift and Nicole Kidman.
Perhaps Ellen’s most awkward celebrity interview: Last year’s painful chat with actress Dakota Johnson, who wouldn’t back down when the host accused her of not inviting her to her birthday party.
“I did invite you and you didn’t come,” Johnson insisted, telling Ellen to “ask everybody … ask Jonathan, your producer”.
The interview then went from bad to worse when Ellen asked about stand-up comedian Tig Notaro, who performed at Johnson’s birthday party.
“What did she do (at the party)?” Ellen asked the actress.
Johnson’s reply was savage: “A bunch of funny stuff. She’s my favourite comedian.”