Jimmy Fallon apologized on Tuesday after a Saturday Night Live skit that aired 20 years ago resurfaced featuring him appearing in blackface to impersonate fellow former SNL cast member Chris Rock. The video made the rounds on social media over the Memorial Day holiday weekend, sending the hashtag #jimmyfallonisoverparty trending by Tuesday morning. Fallon, now…
The video made the rounds on social media over the Memorial Day holiday weekend, sending the hashtag #jimmyfallonisoverparty trending by Tuesday morning. Fallon, now the host of NBC’s The Tonight Show, took to Twitter to apologize for the skit, calling his impersonation of Rock while in blackface “a terrible decision” and “unquestionably offensive decision.”
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.
I am very sorry for making this unquestionably offensive decision and thank all of you for holding me accountable.
— jimmy fallon (@jimmyfallon) May 26, 2020
While the full sketch is not available on NBC’s online platforms, a portion of it was uploaded on YouTube in early February 2019, shortly after NBC News cancelled Megyn Kelly Today in the wake of the morning host’s on-air Halloween blackface defense The video, which has now been picked up on Twitter, references Kelly’s dismissal. (you can watch it below.)
Fallon was a cast member on SNL from 1998-2004 before moving to host NBC’s Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. He eventually became host of The Tonight Show in 2014. All three shows are now executive produced by Lorne Michaels.
Rock departed SNL in 1993 after three seasons.