Rolling Out

Wanda Sykes advised Kevin Hart amid homophobic joke controversy

Sykes sat the star comedian down and explained it in a way he ‘couldn’t ignore’
Kevin Hart (Photo credit: Bang Media)

Kevin Hart owes a lot to fellow comedian Wanda Sykes for her valuable insight into the backlash he faced over old homophobic jokes.

“Wanda Sykes said, ‘There’s people that are being hurt today because of comments like the ones that you made then, and there’s people that were saying it’s okay to make those comments today based off of what you did then,'” Hart told host Anderson Cooper in a recent interview with “60 Minutes,” “It was presented to me in a way where I couldn’t ignore that. So in those moments of despair, great understanding and education can come out of it if you’re given the opportunity.”

The 44-year-old actor and comedian was forced to unceremoniously step down from hosting the 2019 Oscars when controversy arose around some of those past comments that came to light soon after he was named host of Hollywood’s biggest night.

“I sincerely apologize to the LGBTQ community for my insensitive words from my past,” the Lift star wrote on X/Twitter after initially refusing to apologize.

“I’m sorry that I hurt people…I am evolving and want to continue to do so,” Hart wrote in a follow-up post at the time. “My goal is to bring people together, not tear us apart. Much love & appreciation to the Academy. I hope we can meet again.”

Having recently sat down with WSJ Magazine for their 2024 Men’s Spring Fashion issue, the married father of four says in looking back on the situation, he believes it was “a come-to-Jesus moment” he needed to go through.

“Sometimes it’s okay to take a step back and to be educated. I got a crash course,” he related. “It was one that was necessary.”

Hart was awarded the prestigious Mark Twain Prize for American Humor last month and will next be seen in the action comedy/sci-fi film Borderlands, which is scheduled to hit theaters on August 9.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Join our Newsletter

Sign up for Rolling Out news straight to your inbox.

Read more about:
Also read
Rolling Out