Published Sep 16, 2019Last week, Saturday Night Live announced its newest featured players and, along the way, became embroiled in controversy when it was revealed that new hire Shane Gillis had been making racist and homophobic comments on his podcast last year. Now, the show has parted ways with the performer.
UPDATE (9/17, 2:13 p.m. EST): Various cast members have comedians have voices their opinions on Gillis' firing, including Sandra Oh, Rob Schneider, Norm MacDonald and more. Read their responses here.
In a statement, a spokesperson on behalf of Lorne Michaels said:
After talking with Shane Gillis, we have decided that he will not be joining SNL.... 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 has also responded to the news of his firing, saying both that he respects their decision and making a jab at the show in the same statement. "I was always a MAD TV guy anyway," he wrote.
The controversy broke when footage of Gillis' podcast was shared online. His show with Matt McCusker, Matt and Shane's Secret Podcast, showcases Gillis using racial and homophobic slurs. They go on to stereotype comedians based on their gender, sexuality and race.