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Entries in Aflac (3)

Friday
Apr292011

Gilbert Gottfried Defends Jokes About Japanese Earthquake, Tsunami

Shawn Ehlers/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- Comic Gilbert Gottfried remains baffled by the fact some people were upset with him last month for joking on Twitter about the earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

The tweets cost him his job as the voice of the Aflac duck, but Gottfried says the controversy was much ado about nothing.

He sarcastically notes, "The first people to blow it up totally and were the most outraged and shocked and hurt were TMZ and Perez Hilton, because they are, like, the arbiters of good taste."

Gottfried says the jokes were no different from the kind of humor he's exhibited on Comedy Central roasts, as well as in the profane and intentionally tasteless film, The Aristocrats.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Mar162011

Gilbert Gottfried Apologizes for Japan Jokes; Stars Chime in

Shawn Ehlers/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- Comic Gilbert Gottfried is now apologizing for the jokes he posted last weekend on his Twitter page about the killer Japanese quake and tsunami, which got him fired from his decade-long gig as the voice of the Aflac duck.

In a statement, the comic said Tuesday, "I sincerely apologize to anyone who was offended by my attempt at humor regarding the tragedy...I meant no disrespect, and my thoughts are with the victims and their families."

Some stars are saying the insurance company should have known what they were getting into with Gottfried, whose stand-up material is known for often crossing the line.

On his radio show Tuesday, Gottfried's pal Howard Stern said, "You couldn't ask for a more inappropriate human being than Gilbert Gottfried.  When the Aflac people hired him...they know this is an offensive guy, this is a guy whose humor is offensive.  He's made fun of every natural disaster I know...There's no reason for him to be fired.  They should have never hired him to begin with!"

Joy Behar expressed a similar sentiment on The View Tuesday.

Joan Rivers also sounded off about Gottfried Tuesday, saying "That's what comedians do!  We react to tragedy by making jokes to help people in tough times feel better through laughter."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Mar152011

Gilbert Gottfried Fired by Aflac over Japan Earthquake Jokes

Shawn Ehlers/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- The Aflac duck has lost its voice.

Comedian Gilbert Gottfried, who's provided the voice of Aflac's signature duck in its commercials for over a decade, has been fired by the insurance company after he tweeted 12 jokes over the weekend that made light of the devastating earthquake in Japan.

In one tweet, he wrote, "I just split up with my girlfriend, but like the Japanese say, 'They'll be another one floating by any minute now.'"

In another joke, Gottfried said, "Japan is really advanced.  They don't go to the beach.  The beach comes to them."

In a statement, Aflac senior vice president Michael Zuna said, "Gilbert's recent comments about the crisis in Japan were lacking in humor and certainly do not represent the thoughts and feelings of anyone at Aflac."

Aflac noted that Gottfried did not voice the duck in its Japanese commercials.

Following the announcement, Gottfried removed the tweets in question from his Twitter page. He has a reputation for pushing the envelope of what exactly is "too soon" to joke about a tragedy: days after 9-11 he famously joked about it at a celebrity roast -- to the apparent horror of the assembled crowd. Last year, he tweeted a joke about the untimely death of friend and fellow comic Greg Giraldo shortly after he passed away.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio