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Report: Tucker Carlson poised to launch Fox News competitor

Image source: Twitter, @TuckerCarlson

Tucker Carlson is preparing to either work for or start a Fox News competitor, Axios reported Sunday, citing multiple unnamed sources close to Carlson.

"The idea that anyone is going to silence Tucker and prevent him from speaking to his audience is beyond preposterous," Bryan Freedman, Carlson's attorney, told Axios about the contract dispute with Fox News.

Since his unceremonious departure from the network April 21, Fox News has suffered plummeting ratings among key demographic segments alongside the continued ire of its viewers.

Freedman is a Hollywood heavyweight attorney who is also representing Don Lemon. Lemon was recently ousted from CNN, as TheBlaze reported.

Notably, Freedman secured a $30 million payout to former Fox News host Megyn Kelly, Business Insider reported. Kelly has vigorously defended Carlson on social media, and has openly named the individual at the network she believes is responsible for the recent leaks of Carlson's texts and behind-the-scenes video clips.

The leaks have been widely panned on social media. One involved behind-the-scenes banter with a makeup artist. Another was a text in which Carlson described his evolving reaction to seeing a fight take place among participants in the Capitol riots of January 6.

Carlson is "plotting a media empire of his own," according to Axios, but may be held up in that endeavor since his contract at Fox does not expire until January 2025.

The outlet also reported that Carlson and Elon Musk have been in conversation about working together. Further, sources told Axios Carlson is mulling a direct-to-consumer model to deliver content to viewers.

Twitter re-launched its creator subscription program in April, which provides a means to creators to monetize their content on the platform. For the next year, Twitter CEO Elon Musk said Twitter will keep none of the subscription fees.

After Fox News made the announcement about benching the top-rated host, Carlson took to Twitter to address viewers directly. He did so in a roughly two-minute video posted April 26 at 8:01 ET, his former time slot.

The post has since been viewed nearly 81 million times. The video attached to the post has garnered more than 24 million views. Text accompanying the post simply says "good evening," which is the same verbiage Carlson used to open his weeknight, eponymously-named show.

"[Carlson's] team is preparing for war. He wants freedom," a friend of Carlson reportedly told Axios.

"Now, we're going from peacetime to Defcon1," the friend also said, telling the outlet Carlson wants to get the job done "quiet and clean."

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