Minutes after it was announced that new cast member Shane Gillis had been fired from Saturday Night Live over his history of racist and homophobic comments, the disgraced comedian took to social media to speak his mind.
“It feels ridiculous for comedians to making serious public statements but here we are,” Gillis wrote on Monday, using what appears to be a notes app on his phone. “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 [MADtv] guy anyway.”
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Gillis was one of three new additions announced for SNL‘s upcoming 45th season, along with Chloe Fineman and Bowen Yang, the latter of whom is the show’s first Asian cast member. But within hours of that announcement on Sept. 12, Twitter was flooded with questionable clips from Matt and Shane’s Secret Podcast — which Gillis co-hosted with fellow comic Matt McCusker in 2018 — in which he used a racist slur to describe people living in New York City’s Chinatown.
“I’m a comedian who pushes boundaries,” he tweeted that night. “I sometimes miss. If you go through my 10 years of comedy, most of it bad, you’re going to find a lot of bad misses. I’m happy to apologize to anyone who’s actually offended by anything I’ve said. My intention is never to hurt anyone but I am trying to be the best comedian I can be and sometimes that requires risks.”
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