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After Testy Interview With Elon Musk, Don Lemon Says His Deal With X Is Canceled

In the wake of a testy interview with Elon Musk, the former television anchor Don Lemon’s deal for a new talk show on X combusted just days before it was scheduled to air.

Mr. Musk called off Mr. Lemon’s partnership with X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, the day after filming an hour-and-a-half long interview with the former news anchor at SpaceX’s office in Austin, Texas. The conversation was occasionally tense, Mr. Lemon said, as he asked probing questions about the upcoming U.S. presidential elections and Mr. Musk’s various business ventures.

Mr. Lemon said he would release the interview on March 18. “My questions were respectful and wide ranging, covering everything from SpaceX to the presidential election,” Mr. Lemon said in a statement. “We had a good conversation. Clearly he felt differently. 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.”

Salespeople at X were blindsided by the news of the abrupt cancellation, as they had been working as recently as Monday to track the sale of ads for the show, according to an internal document seen by The New York Times.

The cancellation of a show that Mr. Musk pledged would have his “full support” is the latest self-inflicted business disruption at X in recent months. In November, Mr. Musk told advertisers not to spend on his platform, using an expletive to dismiss them, and accused them of trying to “blackmail” him after he appeared to endorse an anti-Semitic conspiracy theory on X. His comments kicked off an expensive exodus.

The cancellation of a show that Elon Musk pledged would have his “full support” is the latest self-inflicted business disruption at X in recent months.Credit…Carly Zavala for The New York Times
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