×

Al Franken Cancels Bill Maher Appearance, Calling N-Word Joke ‘Inappropriate and Offensive’

Sen. Al Franken has cancelled his upcoming appearance on “Real Time with Bill Maher,” Variety has confirmed, in light of the host’s use of the N-word in a joke during his show this past Friday.

The Democratic senator’s appearance was originally scheduled for this upcoming Friday, June 9.

“Senator Franken believes that what Bill Maher said was inappropriate and offensive, which is why he made the decision not to appear on the next episode of ‘Real Time,'” a spokesperson for Franken tells Variety. “He was glad to see Bill, who the Senator considers to be a good friend, apologize and express sincere regret for his comment.”

Franken pulling out of his appearance is the latest in the fallout from Maher’s highly-publicized statement in which he used the phrase, “I’m a house n—–” during an interview with Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse. The moment quickly garnered attention on social media with viewers quick to criticize the host and HBO, calling for the network to fire him. HBO said the remark would be edited out of future airings of the episode and issued a statement saying, “Bill Maher’s comment last night was completely inexcusable and tasteless.”

Maher was swift to issue an apology, stating, “Friday nights are always my worst night of sleep because I’m up reflecting on the things I should or shouldn’t have said on my live show. Last night was a particularly long night as I regret the word I used in the banter of a live moment. The word was offensive and I regret saying it and am very sorry.”

HBO was not immediately available for comment, regarding Franken’s “Real Time” cancellation and a replacement guest for Friday’s episode.

Franken cancelling his “Real Time” appearance comes just days after the senator disinvited Kathy Griffin from a promotional event for his new book, following the comedian’s photo shoot in which she held up a bloody prop that resembled President Donald Trump’s decapitated head. Last week, Franken issued a statement regarding Griffin that was very similar to his statement about Maher. He said, “I believe what Kathy Griffin did was inappropriate and not something that should be anywhere in our national discourse. I consider her a friend and I’m glad she realized she crossed the line and apologized.”

More TV

  • Bob GreenblattCreating Great Characters: Dick Wolf

    Bob Greenblatt on WarnerMedia Streaming Strategy: 'The Assets are Undeniable'

    CANNES — AT&T is ready for battle in the streaming wars. The new parent company of HBO and Warner Bros. has moved quickly to respond to consumer demand by marshaling its forces behind the launch next spring of HBO Max, WarnerMedia Entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt told a crowd of international TV and digital executives here [...]

  • Roberto Gomez Bolanos Mexican actor Roberto

    Chespirito Media Universe in Development from Grupo Chespirito, Thr3 Media Group

    Mexican production companies Grupo Chespirito and Thr3 Media Group have come to terms on a deal to co-produce multi-media content and create the Chespirito Media Universe based on the characters and world of Mexico and Latin America’s most iconic TV creator, director, producer and actor, Chespirito. Thr3 Media Group was launched in January 2018 by [...]

  • Bastian-and-Fabienne_2btube-Office-1

    2btube Adds Lacoproductora to Facebook, YouTube Originals Alliances

    CANNES —  Fast-driving from a huge digital media publishing base into the creation and production of premium content for global platforms and beyond, top Spanish-language digital native media group 2btube has clinched a wide-ranging production partnership with José Miguel Contreras’ Madrid-based Lacoproductora. The deal comes fast on the heels of 2btube’s production alliance with Facebook [...]

  • LA-CHICA-QUE-LIMPIA-PICTURE

    Spain's Fasten Films Nabs Remake Rights to Argentine Series 'The Cleaning Lady' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Barcelona-based company Fasten Films has optioned Spanish and Portuguese adaptation rights to Argentine suspense series “La chica que limpia” (“The Cleaning Lady”). The deal was negotiated with Argentine distributors RM Vistar and GlowStar, who jointly handle the format’s international sales. A Mexican remake of the series is being produced by Turner Latin America, alongside BTF [...]

  • Motiv: Max ConzeFoto: © ProSiebenSat.1/Martin SaumweberDieses

    ProSiebenSat.1 Boss Max Conze Unfazed By the Invasion of the Digital Streaming Giants

    Max Conze, CEO of German broadcast company ProSiebenSat.1 since June last year, appeared relatively relaxed about the prospect of the coming invasion of new subscription streaming players like Disney Plus into his territory when speaking to journalists at TV market and conference Mipcom in Cannes Tuesday. “Disney will not lock away all their content,” he [...]

  • Irmaos Freitas

    Amazon Prime Video takes Turner’s ‘Freitas Brothers’

    CANNES — In yet another – and significant – Latin America distribution deal for the now highly active OTT giant, Amazon Prime Video has acquired Brazilian and pan-Spanish-speaking Latin American SVOD rights to Turner Latin America’s highly anticipated “Freitas Brothers.” The announcement was made late Tuesday by Turner Latin America at Cannes Mipcom TV and [...]

  • Tulsi Gabbard, Tom Steyer, Cory Booker,

    Nonsense Ellen DeGeneres Question Derails an Otherwise Substantive Democratic Debate (Column)

    The fourth Democratic debate was dangerously close to being substantive. For almost three (3!) hours, the twelve (12!) candidates onstage tackled questions on foreign policy, reproductive rights, health care, gun control, big tech, and the opioid crisis. While the other debates — and indeed, the entire 2016 presidential campaign — have been marked by meme-able [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content