Friday, January 21, 2022

Steve Harvey Won’t Film Comedy Specials Because of Cancel Culture

Steve Harvey
Steve Harvey is interviewed on CNN, Dec. 2010

*Steve Harvey cites the loony cancel culture movement as the reason for not planning another stand-up comedy special anytime soon.

“The only way I can do one more special is if it’s at the end of my television career because it will end my television career,” Harvey told media on Tuesday during the TCA panel for his ABC series Judge Steve Harvey, Deadline reports. The new primetime court show airs Tuesday nights at 8 p.m.

“We’re in the cancel culture now. No stand-up [comedian] alive that is sponsor-driven can say anything he wants to. Chris Rock can’t. Kevin Hart can’t. Cedric the Entertainer can’t. D.L. Hughley can’t. I can go down the list. The only person that can say what they want to say on stage is Dave Chappelle because he’s not sponsor-driven, he’s subscription-driven.”

READ MORE: Katt Williams Tells Comics ‘There Is No Cancel Culture’ [WATCH]

Harvey went on to say that “One of the reasons I stopped doing stand-up is because my wife told me God was about to do something for me that I didn’t know about yet.”

He continued, “I didn’t know he was going to give me this TV career, but he did. And it turned out to be the best thing that happened to me. But if I had tried to continue as a stand-up, there’s no way I could maintain a TV career because political correctness has killed comedy.”

Last summer, comedian Katt Williams shared his thoughts on audiences being too sensitive for comedy these days. Speaking to Joe Budden on his June 4 podcast, Williams touched on comedy’s relationship with the internet, TMZ reported. 

“Where do you stand on comics’ ability to be comics without judgment and repercussions from cancel culture?” Budden asked Williams. 

“Some of these things are for the benefit of everything. Nobody likes the speed limit, but it’s necessary. Nobody likes the shoulder of the road, but it’s there for a reason,” Williams said. “My point is, [people] weren’t all that extremely funny back when they could say whatever they wanted to say. At the end of the day, there’s no cancel culture. Cancellation doesn’t have its own culture.”

Meanwhile, one of Steve Harvey’s biggest comedy tours was 1997’s Kings of Comedy Tour alongside DL Hughley, Cedric the Entertainer, and the late Bernie Mac. Harvey’s last comedy special was in 2012.

“Every joke you tell now, it hurts somebody’s feelings,” Harvey said during TCA. “But what people don’t understand about comedians is that a joke has to be about something and somebody. We can’t write jokes about puppies all the time. The joke can’t be about bushes all the time. Some of these jokes will have to be about people because that’s the most interesting topic. So if I come back, I’ll have to wait until I’m done and I’m not done. I want to do one more. I’ll probably have to call it, ‘Well, this is it.’”

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is an entertainment reporter with over 15 years of experience working in the film industry in areas including production and post-production, marketing, distribution, and acquisitions. She has worked for legendary film producer Roger Corman, Quentin Tarantino's production team at Miramax, the late Larry Flynt, MTV/ VH1, Hallmark Channel, Paramount, Jim Henson Co., Parade Magazine, and various LA-based companies representing above-the-line talent.

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