×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

CNN’s Don Lemon Delivers Emotional Criticism of Kevin Hart’s ‘Ellen’ Interview

In a gripping segment on his CNN news show Friday night, anchor Don Lemon opened up as a member of both the African-American and LGBT communities and called for a deeper response from comedian Kevin Hart in renewed controversy over his defunct Oscar hosting gig.

Lemon addressed the spectacle of Hart’s Thursday appearance on Ellen DeGeneres’ talk show, which has widely been criticized for Hart’s perceived victimhood over backlash to previous homophobic tweets and DeGeneres’ emphatic support of his return to the Oscar job, which many found tone deaf.

“Someone like Kevin Hart, with one of the biggest megaphones in the entire world, he can be a leader … he can help change homophobia in the black community, something Kevin’s old twitter jokes addressed but in the wrong way,” Lemon said.

He then referenced an old tweet from Hart about theoretically disciplining his son for playing with a dollhouse.

“That was a joke to Kevin. The truth is, that is a reality for many little boys in the United States … somewhere a black dad is beating his black son,” Lemon said, referencing a story about his friend and Hollywood creator Lee Daniels. In his series “Empire,” Daniels scripted a real-life moment when his own father threw him into a garbage can as a little boy for wearing a pair of high heels.

“Those views of the LGBT people in the black community have consequences,” Lemon said, calling up stats from the American Center for Progress, like their report that 44% of homeless gay youth in America are black.

Listen to Variety’s exclusive interview with Kevin Hart: 

“That’s huge. Remember, black people only make up 12 percent of the U.S. population. Among homeless transgender youth? 62% of them are black. Those kids were likely kicked out of their homes or had to run away because of who they are,” he added.

The anchor surmised that he did not see “any meaningful outreach to the LGBT community. Nothing that you have spoken on,” he said addressing Hart directly. Later in the show, GLAAD president Sarah Kate Ellis appeared and said that repeated invitations to Hart’s representatives were ignored, but the group remains open to working with him.

“For many in the gay community, especially in the black community, the Twitter apologies on ‘Ellen’ have fallen flat,” Lemon continued, noting reactions calling the talk show moment “insincere” and that Hart “somehow turns himself into a victim instead of acknowledging the real victims of violent and sometimes deadly homophobia.”

RELATED VIDEO: 

More Film

  • 'Shazam!' Review: Zachary Levi is Pure

    Film Review: 'Shazam!'

    In “Shazam!,” Zachary Levi brings off something so winning it’s irresistible. He plays a square-jawed, rippling-muscled man of might, with a cheesy Day-Glo lighting bolt affixed to his chest, who projects an insanely wholesome and old-fashioned idea of what a superhero can be. But he’s also playing a breathless teenage kid on the inside, and [...]

  • WGA Agents Contract Tug of War

    Showrunners, Screenwriters Back WGA in Agency Battle, Sides to Meet Again Tuesday

    More than 750 showrunners and screenwriters have backed the WGA’s battle against talent agencies taking packaging fees and other changes to the rules governing the business relationship between agents and writers. The letter of support issued Saturday is significant because of the immense clout showrunners and prominent screenwriters possess in Hollywood. Several showrunners had recently [...]

  • Doppelgänger Red (Lupita Nyong'o) and Adelaide

    Box Office: 'Us' on Track for Second-Highest Debut of 2019 With $67 Million

    Jordan Peele’s “Us” is on its way to scaring up one of the biggest debuts of 2019, with an estimated $67 million from 3,741 North American locations. Should estimates hold, “Us” will be able to claim several milestones: the highest debut for an original horror movie (the biggest launch for any horror pic goes to [...]

  • NF_D_JGN-D6-2160.cr2

    Film Review: 'The Dirt'

    A long time ago, the words sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll carried a hint of danger. The lifestyle did, too, but I’m talking about the phrase. It used to sound cool (back around the time the word “cool” sounded cool). But sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll has long since passed into the realm [...]

  • James Newton Howard Danny Elfman

    New Trend in Concert Halls: Original Music by Movie Composers — No Film Required

    Movie and TV composers are in greater demand than ever for, surprisingly, new music for the concert hall. For decades, concert commissions for film composers were few and far between. The increasing popularity of John Williams’ film music, and his visibility as conductor of the Boston Pops in the 1980s and ’90s, led to his [...]

  • Idris Elba Netflix 'Turn Up Charlie'

    Idris Elba in Talks to Join Andy Serkis in 'Mouse Guard'

    Idris Elba is in negotiations to join Andy Serkis and Thomas Brodie-Sangster in Fox’s fantasy-action movie “Mouse Guard” with “Maze Runner’s” Wes Ball directing. Fox is planning a live-action movie through performance capture technology employed in the “Planet of the Apes” films, in which Serkis starred as the ape leader Caesar. David Peterson created, wrote, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content