off the air
September 16, 2019

Shane Gillis won't be live from New York after all.

The comedian hired as a cast member for Saturday Night Live last week has just been fired following reports on his use of offensive racist and homophobic slurs, a spokesperson for the show announced.

"We were not aware of his prior remarks that have surfaced over the past few days," a spokesperson for SNL said, reports The New York Times' Dave Itzkoff. "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' SNL hiring was announced Thursday, but within hours, a clip from a September 2018 podcast in which he uses a racist slur against Asians spread on Twitter. Subsequent reports shed light on his use of other offensive language including homophobic slurs; in May 2019, he again used a racist slur against Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang.

In a statement last week, Gillis did not apologize for his remarks, although he said he would be "happy to apologize to anyone who's actually offended." On Monday, Gillis released another statement in which he brags that he's "a comedian who was funny enough to get SNL" and "that can't be taken away." After saying he respects SNL's decision, he makes light of the situation by writing he "was always a Mad TV guy anyway." Gillis again did not apologize. Brendan Morrow

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