Gillis’ hiring was also criticized for coming at the same time Yang is making SNL history as the show’s first Chinese-American cast member.
A spokesperson for SNL producer Lorne Michaels released the following statement online:
“After talking with Shane Gillis, we have decided that he will not be joining SNL. We want SNL to have a variety of voices and points of view within the show, and we hired Shane on the strength of his talent as comedian and his impressive audition for SNL. We were not aware of his prior remarks that have surfaced over the past few days. The language he used is offensive, hurtful and unacceptable. We are sorry that we did not see these clips earlier, and that our vetting process was not up to our standard.”
Gillis quickly tweeted a response to the news, saying, “Of course I wanted an opportunity to prove myself at SNL, but I understand it would be too much of a distraction. I respect the decision they made.” He followed that up by noting “I was always a mad tv guy anyway.”
In other SNL news, long-running cast member Leslie Jones will be leaving the show ahead of the Season 45 premiere. Meanwhile, fans were shocked to learn Eddie Murphy will be hosting SNL on December 21, for the first time since 1984.
For more on the current state of SNL, check out this clip from the animated David S. Pumpkins Halloween Special:
Jesse is a mild-mannered writer for IGN. Allow him to lend a machete to your intellectual thicket by following @jschedeen on Twitter.