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Megyn Kelly making brief return to Fox News Channel

Megyn Kelly speaks onstage at Fortune magazine's Most

Megyn Kelly speaks onstage at Fortune magazine's Most Powerful Women Summit on Oct. 2, 2018, in Laguna Niguel, Calif.  Credit: Getty Images for Fortune / Phillip Faraone

For the first time since she left Fox News Channel, Megyn Kelly will return there to be interviewed on Wednesday's "Tucker Carlson Tonight." On Tuesday, however, Fox made clear that this will be nothing more than a visit — and a fleeting one at that. 

In an unusual pushback to widespread speculation, much of the internet variety, that the 48-year-old Kelly and Fox could be laying the groundwork for an official return, Fox News released a statement saying “Megyn Kelly’s forthcoming guest appearance on 'Tucker Carlson Tonight' was coordinated weeks ago and is a one-time occurrence. Any future programming changes we are considering do not involve her.”

The most immediate changes have already arrived in the wake of anchor Shepard Smith's abrupt departure from the news channel last Friday after 23 years. Fox News has said it will rely on fill-in hosts and anchors for afternoon programming until settling on a permanent host. 

Thus, Kelly's Wednesday return was announced at either an awkward or intriguing moment, when Carlson, 50, said during Monday's edition, "someone who knows an awful lot about NBC is making her first TV appearance since parting ways from that channel nearly a year ago. Megyn Kelly will join us on this program for her first interview. She's got a lot to say."

Kelly was positioned for a network bidding war back in 2017, and although one never materialized, NBC still handed her one of the richest contracts in TV news history (an estimated $69 million). Her post-"Today" daytime series and NBC News tenure ended in fiasco when she appeared to support the use of blackface as part of a Halloween costume. She subsequently apologized for her on-air remarks, but NBC News canceled her show days later. Kelly eventually reached an equally massive settlement with NBC, for a reported $35 million. 

Her appearance on "Carlson" is billed as part of a discussion about Ronan Farrow's new book, "Catch and Kill," which covers the Harvey Weinstein and Matt Lauer scandals. Kelly will also be played by Charlize Theron in the Jay Roach movie, "Bombshell," about former Fox News chief Roger Ailes' sexual harassment scandals, out Dec. 20.

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