Roger Ailes has been called the man most responsible for making Donald Trump president of the United States.
On June 30 — when Showtime begins a 7-part series about the Fox TV CEO/ media consultant who died in May 2017, a year after resigning following allegations of sexual harassment — the man who may be most responsible for that show is native Westporter Gabe Sherman.
“The Loudest Voice” — Showtime’s they-said-it-couldn’t-be-made series — is based on Sherman’s 2014 book, “The Loudest Voice in the Room: How the Brilliant, Bombastic Roger Ailes Built Fox News – and Divided a Country.” That too was a book “they” said could never be written.
In both cases, Ailes’ purported wide-ranging, all-encompassing clout was said to forestall any attempt to tell his story.
Sherman knew what he was doing. He was educated through grade 10 in Westport schools. After graduating from Holderness School in New Hampshire and Middlebury College (2001), he spent 10 years writing for New York magazine (including a stint as national affairs editor).
He’s now a special correspondent for Vanity Fair, and a regular contributor to NBC News and MSNBC.
Sherman first began covering Ailes for New York Magazine. The media mogul was not pleased.
“Anything I touched, they waged war at me,” Sherman told The Hollywood Reporter.
When Sherman got a Random House contract to write his book, Ailes hired private detectives to trail him. Ailes also had a 400-page dossier drawn up on the writer.
Sherman’s revenge: In 2016, he got the scoop that Fox owner Rupert Murdoch was orchestrating Ailes’ departure.
Three years later, the adaptation of Sherman’s book is set to debut on TV — the medium that Ailes once ruled, and used so powerfully during Trump’s presidential campaign.
Sherman is ready — for both the series, and its ending.
He says, “In addition to the world getting to see our show” — his wife Jennifer Stahl shares a writing and producing credit — “we’re really ready for this chapter of our lives to be over. This is the end of the Roger Ailes story.”
(For the full Hollywood Reporter story on Gabriel Sherman and the Showtime series, click here.)