Shares came under pressure at the opening following the Musk online interview and news that chief accounting officer Dave Morton was leaving only a month on the job, citing the company's frenetic pace.
Morton had been on the job for about a month, starting one day before Musk announced on Twitter that he was considering taking the electric vehicle company private. It said Mr Morton had no disagreements with Tesla's leadership or financial reporting.
"I have a design for a plane", Musk said, going on to drop a few details about his latest initiative, an electric airplane that could fly at supersonic speeds and incorporate vertical take-off and landing technology. I don't find that it's very good for productivity. He had only been with the company for about a month. Because Musk's company SpaceX is contracted by the federal government, the Air Force is required to take the appearance on Rogan's podcast seriously.
That said, his experience was probably not a good fit for the electric auto maker's startup culture, which is characterized by its flat organizational structure and its fast pace.
Hours before the posting, Musk sat for a 2 1/2-hour interview with comedian Joe Rogan, during which the two mused about work and life while smoking a marijuana joint on camera.
The stoned conversation between Rogan and Musk sounded like typical liberal arts college dorm room fodder, despite taking place between an MMA bro and the world's richest edge lord.
Moody's Investor Service downgraded the company's debt to "junk" status earlier this year. Friday was also the last day for Sarah O'Brien, Tesla's vice president of communications, who announced her resignation last month.
Although he later announced that Tesla would remain a publicly traded company to appease shareholders, that tweet spurred the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to launch an investigation into the veracity of Musk's statement.
However, Musk admitted that "the electric airplane isn't necessary right now", as he is focusing on other things, including the many issues he's dealing with at Tesla right now. Morton, who joined Tesla on August 6, was quoted in a company filing on Friday saying he believes "strongly" in Tesla and that he had no disagreements with the company's leadership or its financial reporting.