New SNL cast member under fire for racist and homophobic ‘jokes’ that resurfaced

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UPDATE September 16, 2019: “Saturday Night Live” has finally broken their silence on the Shane Gillis incident and issued a statement saying that the comedian has been fired from the show.

“After talking with Shane Gillis, we have decided that he will not be joining SNL,” an “SNL” spokesperson said in a statement provided to Variety on behalf of Lorne Michaels.

“We want SNL to have a variety of voices and points of view within the show, and we hired Shane on the strength of his talent as comedian and his impressive audition for SNL. We were not aware of his prior remarks that have surfaced over the past few days. The language he used is offensive, hurtful and unacceptable. We are sorry that we did not see these clips earlier, and that our vetting process was not up to our standard.”

Gillis was part of a trio of newcomers joining the staff. The announcement came last week and in less than 24 hours, a racist and homophobic video resurfaced on social media with Gillis on the “Matt and Shane’s Secret Podcast,” commenting on his disdain for Chinese people, Chinese culture, and Chinese food. He issued a lukewarm apology that was more sorry, not sorry.

Gillis issued a response to his being fired via Twitter:


“I’m a comedian who was funny enough to get SNL. That can’t be taken away. Of course I wanted an opportunity to prove myself at SNL, but I understand it would be too much of a distraction. I respect the decision they made. I’m honestly grateful for the opportunity. I was always a Mad TV guy anyway.”

As Saturday Night Live gears up for its season opener, one of its new hires is facing a fiery backlash for his history of making racist and homophobic remarks.

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Shane Gillis, who was announced as one of the new comedians hired at SNL for its 45th season, is coming under fire for his offensive attacks on gay people and racist language that even once got him fired from a gig.

At issue is Gillis racist attacks used in a former podcast he hosted called “Matt and Shane’s Secret Podcast,” with co-host Matt McCusker, The NY Daily News reports.

In a series of videos from 2018 posted on Twitter by Seth Simons, Gillis appears on camera saying “Let the f*cking ch*nks live there,” when referencing New York’s Chinatown.

In another video posted by Vulture Gillis mocked comedians who have a “confessional style” of comedy calling them “white f*ggot comics” and “f*cking gayer than ISIS.”

He also goes on a tirade ranking comedians by race, gender, and sexual orientation.

“White chicks are literally the bottom,” Gillis says. “Ali Wong is making it so Asian chicks are funnier than white chicks.”

That brand of comedy even got him fired from performing at Good Good Comedy Theatre in Philadelphia.

“Good Good Comedy Theatre stopped working with him within the past few years because of racist, homophobic, and sexist things he’s said on and offstage,” Kate Banford, co-owner of the theater, told Vulture.

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On Thursday, once the videos hit the internet, Gillis offered a lame and half-hearted apology for his offensive material.

“I’m happy to apologize to anyone who’s actually offended by anything I’ve said,” he wrote. “My intention is never to hurt anyone but I’m trying to be the best comedian I can be and sometimes that requires risks.”

Earlier in the day, SNL made an announcement that they hired the first Asian-American regular cast member Bowen Yang.