Brand-new “Saturday Night Live” cast member Shane Gillis, whose casting was just announced Thursday morning, used a racial slur and stereotypes about Asians in a September 2018 episode of his podcast “Matt and Shane’s Secret Podcast.”
“Chinatown’s f–ing nuts,” Gillis says to comedian Matt McCusker in a since-deleted YouTube video from a September 2018 episode of the podcast. “Let the f–ing c—-s live there, huh?” Later in the same episode, Gillis imitates stereotypes about the way Asian immigrants speak English, and references stereotypes about Chinese culture.
Reps for NBC, “SNL” and Gillis did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment Thursday.
On Thursday night, Gillis issued a statement offering to “apologize to anyone who’s actually offended by anything I’ve said,” but describing himself as “a comedian who pushes boundaries” who is “trying to be the best comedian I can be and sometimes that requires risks.” See more here.
The video surfaced on Twitter after it was posted by freelance journalist Seth Simons.
In a second video from the same podcast episode, Gillis says, “An Asian trying to learn English bothers me more than someone listening to Lil Uzi Vert while I’m trying to eat f—ing dinner,” adding, “Nice racism. I love to be f—ing racist.”
And Vulture reported that Gillis has a history of making bigoted jokes, including other podcast recordings in which he disparaged female comedians and mocked comics like Judd Apatow and Chris Gethard using homophobic slurs.
“One of the guys SNL hired today is in trouble for calling me a f—-t on his podcast (among other things). This was his reaction to my special about depression. I feel confident that at least in this moment I’m more proud of Career Suicide than he is of his shitty podcast,” Gethard tweeted in reponse.
Vulture also quoted the co-owner of Philadelphia’s Good God Comedy Theatre, who said the club “stopped working with him within the past few years because of racist, homophobic, and sexist things he’s said on and offstage.”
One of the other two new cast members added to “SNL” Thursday was the show’s first member of full Asian decent, Bowen Yang. Yang moved up from his position as a staff writer on the show, for which he was hired last year. Groundlings alum Chloe Fineman is the third of the three new additions announced Thursday.
The 45th season premiere of “SNL” airs Sept. 28 on NBC.