​Melissa Rivers Leno: Feud Continues About Tonight Show After Death Of Joan Rivers

By:
Staff Reporter
May. 8, 2015

Melissa Rivers and Jay Leno are still exchanging words, and things are getting quite interesting. She claims that the comedian, who famously feuded with Rivers’ mother Joan by following in the footsteps of his predecessor Johnny Carson and refusing to allow her on The Tonight Show, snubbed her at an event a few months after Joan’s death, according to Star Pulse.

In December, Rivers was asked to speak at The Hollywood Reporter’s Women in Entertainment breakfast, which was her first public appearance since her mother’s death in September.

“I walk in, and I’m standing, having a coffee in the reception area, and Jay … looks right at me, and looks away,” Rivers told Howard Stern on his radio show Wednesday morning. “I sort of wrestled with this. Don’t you think you still walk over and say, ‘I’m so sorry about your loss, how are you doing?’ Or, ‘I know there was an issue, but please accept my condolences. … It would have been closure, and it would have been the right thing to do.”

Melissa Rivers and Jay Leno have been feuding for some time. However, Leno’s camp tells a different story, saying Leno wasn’t aware of Rivers’ presence.

“If he made eye contact with her, he didn’t recognize it was Melissa,” Leno’s rep said in a statement. “Had he done so, he would’ve come over to extend his condolences. He apologizes if she was offended, but he did not realize it was Melissa.”

Leno has maintained that he upheld Carson’s ban on Rivers out of respect for the former Tonight Show host. Jimmy Fallon invited Rivers to come on the show as one of his first guests after he took over hosting duties in 2014, according to Daily Mail.

“My mother passed in September, and I was asked to speak at The Hollywood Reporter Women in Entertainment breakfast at the beginning of December, so it was very fresh,” she recalled. “And I got a text from Sarah Silverman the night before, saying, ‘Oh my god, are you aware Jay Leno’s at our table?’ And I said, ‘No, I [wasn’t],’ and I started to freak out. And she said, ‘I’ll take care of it.'”

Silverman kept her word, but Melissa ended up seeing Leno anyway.

“The next morning — and this is literally my first public appearance — I walk in, and I’m standing, having a coffee in the reception area, and Jay…looks right at me, and looks away,” she told Stern.

No doubt a conversation between them would have been awkward at first, but Melissa nevertheless resents that he didn’t make an effort. “I sort of wrestled with this. Don’t you think you still walk over and say, ‘I’m so sorry about your loss, how are you doing?'” she asked. “Or, ‘I know there was an issue, but please accept my condolences.'”

She added, “It would have been closure, and it would have been the right thing to do.” The fact that he didn’t do it, she told Stern, made her question his character. “I just thought to myself, ‘You have no courage,'” she shared.

Melissa Rivers and Jay Leno will probably continue this feud, even after Joan’s passing, notes Us Magazine. Melissa wants her late mother to have respect, but Jay wanted to respect the late Johnny Carson ban. The two main people are gone already, and still these two are still at it.

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