Bill Cosby has thanked Eddie Murphy for the “Saturday Night Live” veteran’s decision not to spoof Cosby during the “Celebrity Jeopardy” sketch that aired as part of “SNL’s” 40th anniversary special on Sunday.
According to NBC News, Cosby released a statement through a spokesperson saying, “I am very appreciative of Eddie and I applaud his actions.”
Murphy made a brief appearance on Sunday’s special to acknowledge his critically acclaimed stint on the show in the early ’80s, and according to fellow “SNL” alum Norm Macdonald, Murphy was originally given the option to portray Cosby in the nostalgic “Jeopardy” segment, but turned down the offer the night before the telecast.
“He knew the laughs would bring the house down,” Macdonald said of Murphy’s decision. “(But) Eddie decides the laughs are not worth it. He will not kick a man when he is down.” Current “Saturday Night Live” cast member Kenan Thompson ended up playing Cosby in the skit instead.
Cosby is currently the subject of numerous allegations of sexual assault from more than 20 women, with accusations dating back to the ’70s.
Watch the “Celebrity Jeopardy” sketch below: