Singer-actor Nick Cannon has posted old tweets from comedians Chelsea Handler, Amy Schumer and Sarah Silverman that contain variants of a gay slur, following his friend Kevin Hart's stepping down as Oscars host over anti-gay tweets and comments.
In the first of a trio of retweets Friday, the 38-year-old Cannon wrote of a June 2010 tweet from Handler, 43, "Interesting. I wonder if there was any backlash here..." Of a May 2010 post from "Ralph Breaks the Internet" star Silverman, 48, Cannon noted, "And I ... love Wreck it Ralph!!!," making use of an expletive while referring to the first of Silverman's two movies in that Disney animated franchise. For a November 2012 tweet by the Rockville Centre-raised Schumer, 37, Cannon wrote, "I'm just saying... should we keep going???"
Cannon's tweets did not distinguish between satirical commentary and statements of personal belief. Representatives for Cannon, Handler, Schumer and Silverman did not respond to Newsday requests for comment. Emmy Award-nominated writer-producer Bryan Fuller ("Heroes," "Pushing Daisies") responded to Cannon's Schumer tweet, writing, "You are drawing a false equivalency — using a word is different than joking about killing your gay child, particularly since gay children have been know [sic] to get killed by their parents."
Early Friday, Hart, 39, announced that he had relinquished his recent appointment as Academy Awards host after homophobic tweets from 2009 to 2011 surfaced, as well as excerpts from his stand-up comedy act and from a 2015 Rolling Stone interview. Aside from an exaggerated Twitter joke about breaking a dollhouse over his son's head, Hart said in his 2010 comedy special "Seriously Funny" that, "One of my biggest fears is my son growing up and being gay" and that "if I can prevent my son from being gay, I will." In the interview, Hart said he would continue to love his son and that his jokes had sprung from "me getting mad at my son because of my own insecurities."
After his old tweets circulated Wednesday, Hart initially declined to apologize, saying in two Instagram videos that he had done so in the past and had evolved since those tweets. A bit more than a day later, he stepped down as Oscars host, tweeting, "I sincerely apologize to the LGBTQ community for my insensitive words from my past."