- Comedian Jerry Seinfeld weighed in on Kevin Hart stepping down as the host of the 2019 Oscars after several homophobic tweets resurfaced.
- Seinfeld told NBC’s “Sunday Today” anchor Willie Geist that Hart is a “brilliant” comedian who can bounce back from the controversy.
- He compared Hart’s situation to dirty comedians adjusting their material so they can appear on television shows like “The Tonight Show.”
Jerry Seinfeld said that he thinks Kevin Hart, who recently stepped down as the host of the 2019 Oscars after homophobic tweets resurfaced, is a “brilliant comedian” who can bounce back from this.
In a preview from Sunday’s episode of NBC’s “Sunday Today,”anchor Willie Geist asked Seinfeld about his thoughts on the current culture where public figures are expected to apologize for offensive things they said in the past.
“Kevin is in a position, because he’s a brilliant comedian, to kind of decide what he wants to do,” Seinfeld told Geist. “He doesn’t have to step down. But he can. When you look at that situation, you think, ‘Who got screwed in that deal?’ I think Kevin’s gonna be fine. To find another Kevin Hart, that’s not so easy. He’s a brilliant guy with a movie career.”
Seinfeld also discussed his early days of stand-up, when comedians couldn’t get on “The Tonight Show” unless they had very clean jokes, with no cursing or sexual material. He explained that many dirty comedians learn to adjust their work to accommodate to that. Seinfeld says he believes Hart can adjust his work in a similar way.
“That’s the gig,” said Seinfeld.
But Hart wasn’t criticized for dirty material. Hart was widely criticized for his record of making homophobic jokes and insults, including use of the word “f–,” and using “gay” as a negative description while referring to his son if he were to catch him playing with a dollhouse. Several of these tweets resurfaced on Twitter after the news that he’d host the 2019 Oscars was announced. Hart responded to the backlash by asking people to stop being “negative.” The response also received backlash.
“I have made the choice to step down from hosting this year’s Oscar’s….this is because I do not want to be a distraction on a night that should be celebrated by so many amazing talented artists,” Hart tweeted. “I sincerely apologize to the LGBTQ community for my insensitive words from my past.”
You can watch the clip from the Seinfeld interview below, and see the full interview Sunday on NBC:
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