Where Is Bill O'Reilly Today?

Bill O'Reilly's TV show The O'Reilly Factor was a force to be reckoned with from its debut in 1996 to its end in 2017, and its host was one of Fox News' biggest stars. The best-selling author brought in millions of viewers to the cable news channel with his 8 p.m. show and, in his last month on the air, he raked in an impressive 3.3 million viewers. His star shone brightly until sexual harassment allegations against him and his involvement in numerous multi-million dollar settlements began making headlines, tarnishing his reputation and costing him his job ... but not his loyal fans.

Since the last episode of The O'Reilly Factor, which aired on April 21, 2017, the conservative host has been keeping busy and continuing to build his career by exploring new avenues, including online streaming and a possible return to the small screen. He's also continued to solidify his status as a best-selling author and his name has yet to wholly disappear from the news. Here's what Bill O'Reilly is up to today.

He launched his own news show online

Not letting the headlines get to him, Bill O'Reilly refused to be silenced, and, rather than going into hiding or waiting for another network to offer him a job, he decided to launch his own daily show. 

First, he debuted a daily podcast dubbed No Spin News, then he upped the ante and launched a 30-minute news show on his website, which he's made available to paying members only. The pilot episode premiered in August 2017 and, as The Hollywood Reporter noted, it saw O'Reilly proclaiming that his goal was to "bring everybody into the annual premium membership fold and spread the word."

Shot in a studio, the online show featured the topics and type of commentary his fans turned to him for, plus advertising for everything from his books to a dress shirt he wore. As he told viewers, traditional TV no longer enticed him because "it's a nasty, dirty game." He added, "If I get back in, I'll be attacked. I know that. I have my attorneys ready to go."

He returned to cable TV … sort of

Despite being ousted from Fox News and declaring that TV news is "a nasty, dirty game," Bill O'Reilly eventually returned to the small screen — in a way. Page Six reported in May 2018 that O'Reilly was in talks with the cable channel Newsmax TV for a possible return to his former 8 p.m. time slot.

The move wouldn't have been a huge surprise when you consider that, in April 2018, Fox's former executive vice president of news, Michael Clemente, was appointed CEO of Newsmax Broadcasting. But O'Reilly never became Newsmax's new headliner. Instead, he apparently licensed his self-produced No Spin News webshow, which the cable channel announced it would start airing in various time slots in November 2018. 

"So get ready America for a rollicking half-hour of news and opinion you can't find anywhere else!" read the Newsmax press release. "Change the channel on fake news! Don't waste another minute of your time on the dishonest networks and their so-called 'journalists.'" Yep, it sounds like O'Reilly's definitely back.

He wrote a book about Trump

Clearly, Bill O'Reilly already proved his writing bona fides with repeated slots on bestseller lists. So it only makes sense that he would attempt to amplify that by covering one of the most controversial figures in recent history: Donald Trump.

In February 2019, O'Reilly got a chance to interview his subject aboard Air Force One, after which, he gave and update on the book's content and progress. Telling premium subscribers of his web series (via Media Matters) that he still didn't have a release date, he also revealed that it was "not part of the Killing series." He continued, "It's a history book on Donald Trump. Why he believes what he believes — fascinating to me. I've known the guy 30, 35 years. Tough to get him to talk about his childhood, his parents, his brothers and sisters. ... It's about what I've seen, personally, over those 30 years with him."

By May 2019, O'Reilly told Sean Hannity on his radio show (via Real Clear Politics) that he "just finished the book" and that he viewed his authorship of it as a service to Americans. "People are going to appreciate – whether you like Trump or not – knowing the truth about him," O'Reilly said, adding, "Because certainly the truth is not being told in this country about President Trump."

Publisher Henry Holt and Company announced (via USA Today) that the book, titled The United States of Trump: How the President Really Sees America will hit shelves in Fall 2019.

He's back on talk radio

Fans who don't want (or can't afford) to pay for Bill O'Reilly's member's only web show caught a lucky break in May 2019 when the long-time political pundit announced he was joining the line-up at WPG Talk Radio 95.5 with a new 15-minute segment called The O'Reilly Update. In a press release, O'Reilly said the new gig was designed to "arm [listeners] with facts, and provide opinion based on those facts." He also said, "More than ever before, Americans need accurate information and honest news analysis in order to make intelligent decisions. It is all about protecting yourself and your family."

The O'Reilly Update marks his return to the medium after a decade, when he last hosted The Radio Factor "from the headquarters of Fox News," according to The Washington Post. The outlet also cited passages from former associate producer Joe Muto's book, An Atheist in the FOXhole, which alleged a much less noble purpose for O'Reilly's previous radio stint.

Although O'Reilly pulled a "seven-figure" yearly salary, according to Muto, he soured on the job when he realized he'd never reach the top of the ratings. "What he wanted more than anything was to win," Muto wrote, adding, "And when it became clear that he couldn't do that with the radio show, he picked up his ball and went home."

He's doing a celebrity cruise

Where is one of the last places you'd expect to find the tough-talking, no nonsense former Fox News host? If you answered, "A spring break cruise," give yourself a pat on the back, because along with Glenn Beck and several other conservative media figures, Bill O'Reilly will be hosting guests aboard the Costa Luminosa in March and April 2020. But don't worry, this isn't about drinking and twerking until you pass out on the lido deck.

According to Glenn Beck's sales pitch, this luxurious journey across the Mediterranean Sea "isn't about indulging yourself," but rather, is a way to learn "the history of our religion, of our faith, of freedom, of the republic" with stops in Croatia, Greece, and Israel. So, how much does it cost to "cruise through history" as Beck put it? Packages range from $2,999 to $8,999.

As of this writing, it's unclear exactly when O'Reilly will be aboard the ship and for how long. He's featured on the official cruise materials as a "host," however, Beck didn't refer him by name in the promotional video — instead referring to "some others that my pop in."

A secret lawsuit against his ex-wife

Bill O'Reilly and his ex-wife Maureen McPhilmy divorced in 2011 after she accused him of attacking her in 2009 (their daughter testified that she saw her dad choking her mom). But their drama didn't end there. In 2016, McPhilmy was granted primary residential custody of their two kids (then 13 and 17) and, shortly after, O'Reilly sued her for $10 million, accusing her of tricking him into signing their divorce and custody agreement with "false misrepresentations and material omissions." He also accused her of using the money she received in the divorce to "finance an existing extra-marital relationship" and sued her divorce attorney for "aiding and abetting."

According to Jezebel, the specifics of the lawsuits remain unclear, as O'Reilly has fought to keep the proceedings sealed to protect his kids from the inevitable media scrutiny. However, what is known is that O'Reilly won the suit against McPhilmy, and was later awarded $14,476,886.13 in damages. His suit against McPhilmy's lawyer, MIchael Klar, which Jezebel reported was "largely identical" to that of the McPhilmy suit, ended in December 2018, when a New York appellate court dismissed O'Reilly's complaint, because it fell outside the statute of limitations for a fraud case.

Fox kept turning a blind eye… until it no longer could

Despite the fact that Fox News fired O'Reilly in April 2017, the network may have actually been turning a blind eye to the sexual harassment accusations that eventually derailed his career for quite some time, as a New York Times investigation uncovered.

As the paper reported in October 2017, the TV host reached an unprecedented $32 million settlement with former analyst Lis Wiehl, a 15-year Fox News veteran, the previous January. Then, that February, the network renewed O'Reilly's contract, as if nothing had happened, signing a $25 million per year deal with him for four years. What's more, 21st Century Fox acknowledged that they were indeed "aware of the woman's complaints about Mr. O'Reilly" and, as the NYT concluded, they "tried and ultimately failed to contain the second wave of a sexual harassment crisis that initially burst into public view."

Just a couple of months later, they changed their tune and O'Reilly was out. "After a thorough and careful review of the allegations, the Company and Bill O'Reilly have agreed that Bill O'Reilly will not be returning to the Fox News Channel," 21st Century Fox (which owns Fox) said in a statement, as reported by Variety.

He reportedly silenced accusers

As court documents obtained by The New York Times in April 2018 revealed, O'Reilly appeared to have a system in place for silencing anyone who accused him of sexual harassment — a system which included money (lots of it) and absolute confidentiality.

For example, as part of his settlement with former show producer Andrea Mackris, O'Reilly demanded that she hand over all of her evidence, which included audio recordings, and swear to deny its legitimacy if it ever became public by calling it "counterfeit and forgeries."

Mackris also had to agree that, if she ever breached their agreement, she would have to return all of the money she received, plus pay O'Reilly's legal fees. Even more shocking, however, is the fact that he actually hired a private investigator to "dig up information" about Mackris. And as if that weren't enough, he also convinced her lawyers to switch sides in the middle of their ongoing legal battle, apparently causing a major conflict of interest.

Going head-to-head with former Fox colleagues

Laurie Dhue, a former anchor and one of five women working at Fox who received settlements from O'Reilly, filed a defamation lawsuit against her alleged attacker in March 2018, claiming that the host defamed her and negatively affected her career while defending himself against the allegations that got him fired.

O'Reilly wasted no time fighting back against the lawsuit with one of his attorneys, Frederic S. Newman, shooting back, saying in a statement, "Mr. O'Reilly has never mentioned Dhue, and any attention she has received has been the result of her own actions."

The court seemed to side with this statement and, in October 2018, a New York federal judge threw out Dhue's lawsuit and ruled that she would have to go to arbitration if she wished to continue her legal battle against O'Reilly. In arbitration, the parties involved must reach a verdict outside the court of law with help from an arbitrator, a third party who listens to both sides and makes a final decision in the dispute.

He compared Brett Kavanaugh protesters to Nazis

Bill O'Reilly just can't stay out of the headlines, especially when it comes to stories involving sexual harassment accusations. Amid the allegations being faced by then-Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh in October 2018, the former Fox star took to Twitter to voice his disapproval of critics, writing, "According to the left wing mob, all 'survivors,' 'victims,' or whatever other label is used, must be believed, no matter if the allegations are denied. And if you don't immediately believe the accuser, then you are an abuser."

He took things one step further when, speaking about Kavanaugh's vocal protestors with conservative commentator Sean Hannity, he said, "This Kavanaugh thing was not accidental, and it wasn't caused by one woman stepping forth. This was an organized thing, that if they couldn't get him before the confirmation on merit, they're going to destroy him personally."

He then went on to practically compare protestors to Nazis, adding, "If you look back into 1930, to 1936, this is very similar to what happened in Germany. Good people in Germany, good Germans, looked away. They did not confront the evil that was coming at them. And I put forth to you and America, we have a lot of evil coming at us right now and I don't know how many people are looking away."

He's a best-selling author

It doesn't matter how much controversy he stirs up, Bill O'Reilly, at the time of this writing, remains the undisputed best-selling nonfiction author in the United States. 

Released on Oct. 9, 2018, his book Killing the SS: The Hunt for the Worst War Criminals in History, a part of the Killing series, shot straight to No. 1 on the New York Times bestsellers list, pushing Ship of Fools by Tucker Carlson (who took over his spot at Fox) to second best, which must have been extremely satisfying. The title joined the ten tomes published before it, all of which had snagged the coveted top spot on the nonfiction list upon their release.

As Quartz discovered after looking at New York Times bestsellers lists dating back to 2008, "O'Reilly has had the most books hit the No. 1 spot of any single nonfiction author." Taking into account that sometimes authors and publishers buy up volumes in bulk to make it seem as if their book is trending, the outlet then removed bulk sales from the equation and O'Reilly still landed at No. 1 with 11 best-selling titles.