Megyn Kelly took her public feud with Jane Fonda to a new level on Monday, after the actress slammed the NBC host for her “inappropriate” question during a segment that aired in September.
Fonda, who was at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah, sat down for an interview with Variety to talk about the documentary, “Jane Fonda in Five Acts.” She addressed the hype around a viral interview from September, when Kelly asked Fonda about her thoughts on plastic surgery.
“I was stunned [by the plastic surgery question],” Fonda told Variety in a Q&A that was published on Saturday. “It was so inappropriate. It showed that she’s not that good an interviewer.”
As to whether Fonda would ever appear on Kelly’s show again, the actress said yes, but only “if she comes around and learns her stuff, sure.”
Kelly reacted to Fonda’s criticism on her show, “Megyn Kelly Today.”
“It’s time to address the poor-me routine,” Kelly said. “First, some context. Fonda was on to promote a film about aging. For years, she has spoken openly about her joy in giving a cultural face to older women.”
Kelly went on to say that she doesn’t need advice from Fonda.
“But I have no regrets about the question,” Kelly said. “Nor am I in the market for a lesson from Jane Fonda on what is and is not appropriate. After all, this is a woman whose name is synonymous with outrage.”
The viral moment between Kelly and Fonda took place in September when the former Fox News host asked Fonda about the “work” she’s had done. Fonda appeared on Kelly’s show with Robert Redford to promote their film, “Our Souls at Night.”
“You’ve been an example to everyone in how to age beautifully and with strength and unapologetically,” Kelly said to Fonda at the time. “You admit you’ve had work done, which I think is to your credit. But you look amazing…I read that you said you’re not proud to say you’ve had work done. Why not?”
Fonda responded after a pause and then changed the subject back to her movie: “Good attitude, good posture. I take care of myself. But let me tell you why I love this movie that we did, ‘Our Souls at Night,’ rather than plastic surgery.”
But Kelly on Monday not only defended her interview with Fonda, but questioned the actress’ patriotism.
“By the way, she still says she’s not proud of America,” Kelly said. “So, the moral indignation is a little much. She put her plastic surgery out there. She said she wanted to discuss the plight of older women in America. And honestly she has no business lecturing anyone on what qualifies as offensive.”
Fonda courted controversy during a 1972 visit to North Vietnam, where she met with and posed for pictures with the Viet Cong at an anti-aircraft gun site. She denounced “US imperialism” on Viet Cong radio, earning her the nickname “Hanoi Jane.” Fonda publicly apologized for her actions in a “20/20” interview in 1988.
“Look at her treatment of our military during the Vietnam War. Many of our veterans still call her ‘Hanoi Jane’ thanks to her radio broadcasts which attempted to shame American troops,” Kelly said. “She posed on an anti-aircraft gun used to shoot down our pilots.”
CNN has reached out to Fonda’s representative for comment.
Oliver Darcy and Tom Kludt contributed to this report.