ViacomCBS terminates partnership with Nick Cannon over controversial interview
The media company made the decision after Cannon was accused of making anti-Semitic comments
Nick Cannon‘s 15-year relationship with ViacomCBS has come to an end, as the media giant severed ties on Tuesday over a recent podcast interview.
One the June 30 episode of his YouTube show, Cannon’s Class, the actor-turn-producer had Professor Griff from Public Enemy as a guest, and the two shared what many are calling “anti-Semitic” comments.
In recent years, Cannon has emerged as not only the president of young Hollywood class of late 1990s and early 2000s, but a boss in his own right. From movies to his hit show Wild ‘N Out, Nick’s $50 million empire has made him a force to reckon with.
Thus, his Cannon Class (and the 368K subscribers that tune in) were attentive when he had controversial artist Griff as a guest and the two began to engage in conversations about racial supremacy.
Viacom released a statement on Tuesday night announcing his termination:
“We have spoken with Nick Cannon about an episode of his podcast ‘Cannon’s Class’ on YouTube, which promoted hateful speech and spread anti-Semitic conspiracy theories.”
“While we support ongoing education and dialogue in the fight against bigotry, we are deeply troubled that Nick has failed to acknowledge or apologize for perpetuating anti-Semitism, and we are terminating our relationship with him.”
Cannon defended himself against claims of anti-Semitism on Monday in a series of tweets.
“Anyone who knows me knows that I have no hate in my heart nor malice intentions,” he wrote. “I do not condone hate speech nor the spread of hateful rhetoric. We are living in a time when it is more important than ever to promote unity and understanding.”
Griff has had a history of controversy — one that many believe was responsible for the legendary rap group Public Enemy’s demise.
Griffin once said to a news outlet, “The Jews are wicked. And we can prove this.”
On Cannon’s podcast, a defiant Griff doubled down on his previous statements:
“I’m hated now because I told the truth,” he said.
Cannon replied to him, “You’re speaking facts. There’s no reason to be scared of anything when you’re speaking the truth.” The Mask Singer host further stated that this was not “hate speech” because “the Semitic people are Black people.”
In 2017, the 39-year-old actor was fired from the NBC hit variety show America’s Got Talent for using colorful and controversial language in his stand-up.
For over 15 years, Cannon has maintained a strong professional career with ViacomCBS-owned networks MTV and Nickelodeon, which included his debut on All That in 1998, the oldest continuous hip-hop series in history, Wild ‘N Out, and becoming the chairman of TeenNick for Nickelodeon and the development and creative consultant of the network since 2009.
No word from FOX on if they are severing their relationship with him over his remarks. He is currently the host of their top rated show, The Mask Singer.
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