The onetime viral sensation said things got frosty between him and the daytime TV host who helped make him a star.
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Greyson Chance is done offering second chances to Ellen DeGeneres.

Back in 2010, when the singer-songwriter was in sixth grade, he became an overnight sensation after a video of his middle school performance of Lady Gaga's "Paparazzi" went viral on YouTube. The clip caught the attention of DeGeneres, who invited him onto her daytime talk show, introduced him to industry executives, and signed him to her record label, all within the same year.

But in an interview with Rolling Stone published Thursday, Chance, 25, said the glitz and glamor of superstardom quickly faded away as DeGeneres took hold of his career. "My whole week, my whole month, my whole year could change [with] one text message from her," he told the outlet. "That was horrible."

Greyson Chance and Ellen DeGeneres
Greyson Chance and Ellen DeGeneres
| Credit: Sarah Morris/WireImage; Christopher Polk/E! Entertainment/NBCUniversal/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

After joining DeGeneres' label, Chance said she became "domineering and way too controlling," making decisions for him all the way down to his stage outfits. "She would come in and look at a rack, yell at stylists, berate people in front of me and say, 'This is what you're wearing on the show,'" he said. "She was just degrading to people."

A representative for DeGeneres declined to comment to EW regarding Chance's remarks. A rep for Chance had no additional comment.

Chance also alleged to Rolling Stone that DeGeneres "completely abandoned" him and stopped taking his calls after his first EP bombed in 2012. That year, he was dropped by his label and team. While he went on to release his own music independently and made multiple appearances on The Ellen DeGeneres Show until 2019, Chance said that his interactions with the titular host became a lot less friendly.

Reflecting on his final appearance on the show, Chance described the studio as a "place of active trauma" and slammed DeGeneres for discussing his sexuality during their interview. (Chance came out as gay in 2017.)

"[When I came out,] I hadn't spoken to her in years… That's so messed up, that you're now showing the world as if we're so tight. We're so good," Chance said. "And behind the scenes, you are this insanely manipulative person."

Chance's description of DeGeneres contrasts sharply with her once squeaky-clean public image and "Be kind" motto, though the singer isn't the first person to criticize her behind-the-scenes behavior. In the summer of 2020, former and current Ellen employees called the show out for promoting a "toxic work environment" full of racism, intimidation, and fear. An internal investigation ensued, three executives left the show, and DeGeneres apologized to her staff multiple times. In May 2021, DeGeneres announced that her show would be ending after its 19th season. The final episode was this past May.

In his Rolling Stone interview, Chance said that Ellen producers asked him to return one last time during the final season but he turned them down. "How in the world am I supposed to sit down and say I'm so thankful and let her take that moment?" he said.

Chance added, "I couldn't do that. So I turned down a national-TV gig on the eve of an album release, which is probably not a smart thing to do, but I had to do it for my integrity."

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