Wendy Williams is making amends after her post-Golden Globes commentary on The Wendy Williams Show included a remark about Oscar-nominated actor Joaquin Phoenix that many feel mocked a scar he has above his lip.
In the Jan. 7 episode of her daytime talk show, Williams explained the ways she finds the Joker star “oddly attractive,” noting “when he shaves off his mustache he’s got a hairline fracture. He’s got one of those — what do you call it — cleft lip, cleft palate.” (Last October, Phoenix told Vanity Fair that his scar is a “nonsurgical scar he was born with,” rather than a surgically fixed cleft.)
While making the statement on her show, Williams pulled up her lip, mimicking a cleft lip, which angered many viewers, including Canadian football player Adam Bighill.
After a week of campaigning for Williams to apologize, Bighill, who has a son born with a cleft lip, received an apology from the talk show host via Twitter on Wednesday. Williams added that her show has donated to the charities Operation Smile and the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association.
. @Bighill44 We’re thinking about Beau today as he is in surgery. I want to apologize to the cleft community and in Beau’s honor, our show is donating to @operationsmile and @AmerCleftPalate and encourage our Wendy Watchers to learn more and help support the cleft community.— Wendy Williams (@WendyWilliams) January 16, 2020
While Bighill thanked Williams for her apology, Cher was not eager to let Williams off the hook. The icon tweeted that Williams “should be fired” and posted a screenshot of Williams holding up her lip asking if an apology makes up for the controversial action.
BEFORE THEIR TEENS‼️MUCH OF THE TIME THEY ARE IN PAIN,AFRAID,BUT HAVE HOPE 🙏🏻THEY WILL LOOK NORMAL. THE💔& FEAR THEIR PARENTS GO THROUGH IS UNBEARABLE. IF YOUR MOM SAW WHAT YOU DID SHE’D BE ASHAMED. MY MOM TAUGHT ME TO LOVE & HELP PPL IN PAIN.WHO ARE U⁉️U SHOULD B FIRED— Cher (@cher) January 16, 2020
EW has reached out to Phoenix for comment.