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2019 Clusterfest - Larkin Comedy Club – Day 1

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Resurfaced Video Shows Shane Gillis Using Racial Slur

Saturday Night Live‘s 45th season was getting some attention for positive reasons…until it wasn’t. Now, fans are concerned about the show’s new editions to the cast.

On Thursday, the long-running sketch comedy series announced that it added three new faces to its cast; Chloe Fineman, Bowen Yang, and Shane Gillis—a comedian from Pennsylvania who was recently recognized as a New Face at the 2019 Just for Laughs Festival.

Just a few hours after the big announcement, the messages of congratulations for Shane on the new gig came to a screeching halt as footage of him using anti-Asian slurs resurfaced on the internet, igniting a wave of backlash and calls for firing.

The clips were brought to the internet’s attention by entertainment reporter Seth Simons, who says the comments were made during a 2018 episode of the Matt and Shane’s Secret Podcast. The two spend a good while making disparaging remarks about different Asian cultures while simultaneously wondering why white people get such a bad reputation for being racist….ahhhh, the irony.

One of the first clips shared shows Gillis saying, “Chinatown’s f***ing nuts,” to his co-host, comedian Matt McCusker. He continues, “Let the f***ing ch**ks live there.”

Simons goes on to share a clip from the same episode, where Gillis complains about how “annoying” it is to hear Asians trying to learn English before describing his own comments as “Nice racism, good racism.”

This uncovering of very recent racist comments from one new SNL cast member is especially disappointing considering the show’s simultaneous new-hire Bowen Yang, who is the show’s first Asian-American full-time cast member.

Following the backlash, Shane Gillis released a statement on Twitter regarding his use of a racial slur, writing,

“I’m a comedian who pushes boundaries. 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.”

Why he’s bringing up the 10-year timeline when these comments were made only a year ago….the world may never know. He goes on to add that he’ll offer an apology to “anyone who’s actually offended.”

NBC and Saturday Night Live have yet to comment on the controversy. The show returns for its 45th season on September 28, with host Woody Harrelson and musical guest Billie Eilish.

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