Donald Trump to Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon over hair-mussing incident: Stop whimpering and be a man

FP Staff

June 25, 2018 17:22:01 IST

President Donald Trump targeted Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon in a Twitter post, asking him to "be a man” and stop “whimpering” about the personal anguish he felt over the backlash he received after messing up Trump’s hair during a 2016 campaign appearance on Fallon’s late-night talk show.

FILE - In this Sept. 15, 2016 image originally released by NBC, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump appears with host Jimmy Fallon during a taping of "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon," in New York. Fallon is opening up about the personal anguish he felt following the backlash to his now-infamous hair mussing appearance with Donald Trump. Trump opponents criticized Fallon for a cringeworthy interview only weeks before the election where Fallon playfully stroked Trump’s hair. (Andrew Lipovsky/NBC via AP, File)

Donald Trump appears with host Jimmy Fallon during a 2016 taping of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon in New York. Andrew Lipovsky/NBC

Fallon recently told The Hollywood Reporter he "made a mistake" and apologised "if I made anyone mad." He adds that he "would do it differently" looking back on the episode, which aired on 15 September, 2016. The comments didn’t appear to sit well with Trump.

Trump opponents criticised Fallon for a cringeworthy interview only weeks before the election where Fallon playfully stroked Trump's hair. Fallon's show eventually lost more than one-fifth of its audience and its late-night crown to Stephen Colbert's new and more political The Late Show for CBS.

Fallon said in the Hollywood Reporter podcast that he wasn't approving of Trump or his beliefs just because he joked with him: "I did not do it to 'normalise' him or to say I believe in his political beliefs or any of that stuff." 

The talk show host has discussed the episode before, explaining in a 2017 interview with Vanity Fair that he was just "trying to have fun" with Trump, but revealed that he was "devastated" to learn that people had a negative reaction. He also told The New York Times: "If I let anyone down, it hurt my feelings that they didn't like it. I got it."

Fallon responded to the President's tweet with a nod to the plight of young immigrants caught up in administration policies. “In honor of the President’s tweet I’ll be making a donation to RAICES in his name,” Fallon said, referring to a nonprofit organization that provides free and low-cost legal services to immigrant children, families and refugees in Texas.

With inputs from AP

Updated Date: Jun 25, 2018 17:25 PM