Jimmy Fallon is suffering swift backlash after a clip from an old 2000 SNL sketch resurfaced on the internet. The clip shows him impersonating comedian, Chris Rock, in dark face paint, a wig and a goatee. The incident had people divided, while some enraged fans went as far as to ‘cancel’ the late night TV host by trending the hashtag, #JimmyFallonIsOverParty, on popular social media platform Twitter. Some just demanded a public apology from Fallon, who did just that.
“In 2000, while on SNL, I made a terrible decision to do an impersonation of Chris Rock while in blackface. There is no excuse for this,” Fallon tweeted. “I am very sorry for making this unquestionably offensive decision and thank all of you for holding me accountable.”
However, a lot of his fans and friends were quick to defend him, including fellow comedian and actor Jamie Foxx, who commented on an instagram post. “You are a comedian… and a great one at that,” Foxx wrote. “You did an incredible impersonation of Chris Rock… It was not black face.”
Foxx also went on to mention his time on a sketch comedy program “In Living Color” which he starred on alongside Keenen Ivory Wayans, Jim Carrey, Tommy Davidson and David Alan Grier. “we did characters from every race.” He commented, “We comedians know it’s a tough time right now. But this one is a stretch.”
Foxx pointed out that some of the people who were quick to attack Fallon haven’t even seen the sketch and suggested they leave Jimmy alone. “We got bigger fish to fry … #changecourse”, Foxx commented.
Actor Marlon Wayans also spoke up in support of the actor, saying, “This #jimmyfallonisoverparty is dumb as hell,” @jimmyfallon is truly one of the nicest guys I’ve known in our industry. Y’all stop digging up old (expletive).”
This is the second time the video has resurfaced in recent years and it has managed to restart the debate on celebrities doing Blackface for entertainment.