'Saturday Night Live' Fires Shane Gillis Over Resurfaced Racial Slurs

Meaghan Darwish
NBCUniversal; Shane Gillis via Instagram

Just days after unveiling three new cast members, Saturday Night Live is cutting ties with one of them.

Shane Gillis has been fired from the long-running sketch comedy show before even making it to air. The newbie came under fire when past racist and homophobic remarks he made on a podcast were resurfaced.Since the segment became a topic of debate, Gillis did release an apology — which was met with mixed reaction.

On Tuesday, an SNL spokesperson released the following statement on behalf of Lorne Michaels.

"After talking with Shane Gillis, we have decided that he will not be joining SNL," the statement reads. "We want SNL to have a variety of voices and points of view within the show, and we hired Shane on the strength of his talent as comedian and his impressive audition for SNL. We were not aware of his prior remarks that have surfaced over the past few days.

"The language he used is offensive, hurtful and unacceptable. We are sorry that we did not see these clips earlier, and that our vetting process was not up to our standard," the statement concludes.

In response to the firing, Gillis shared the following message on Twitter:

"It feels ridiculous for comedians to be making serious public statements but here we are. I'm a comedian who was funny enough to get SNL. That can't be taken away. Of course I wanted an opportunity to prove myself at SNL, but I understand it would be too much of a distraction. I respect the decision they made. I'm honestly grateful for the opportunity. I was always a Mad Tv guy anyways."

Stay tuned as this story develops.

Saturday Night Live, Season 45 Premiere, Saturday, September 28, 11:30/10:30c, NBC